EVERETT — A slight majority of voters favored Democrat Megan Dunn for an open Snohomish County Council seat.
A slighter majority had a preference for the county auditor’s job, while county treasurer’s contest remained ultra tight in early returns.
Initial election totals showed Dunn leading her Republican rival, Anna Rohrbough, 51.6% to 48.2%.
“We’re going to wait for all of the votes to be counted,” Dunn said as she took in results at the Vintage Cafe in downtown Everett. “We feel good about early returns. Democrats tend to vote late and progressive voters tend to vote late, so we continue to feel good about the race.”
In the auditor’s race, 51.1% of voters favored Garth Fell over Cindy Gobel, giving him an election-night lead of 1,986 votes.
Competition for the county treasurer’s job was even closer. Rob Toyer enjoyed 50.3% of the initial returns, some 715 ballots ahead of Brian Sullivan.
Dunn and Rohrbough emerged atop a crowded primary field of eight candidates this summer. They offered starkly different approaches as they competed for the council’s District 2, which covers the Everett, Mukilteo and Tulalip areas.
Dunn, who works at an environmental nonprofit, has long been active in local politics. She was a leader in last year’s campaign to create geographical voting districts for the Everett City Council.
Rohrbough has served on the Mukilteo City Council since early 2018. She works as a leadership coach. Her election-night showing far outperformed what other Republicans have accomplished recently in the heavily Democratic district.
The county’s Elections Division released initial results after 8 p.m. Tuesday. Updated totals are expected around 5 p.m. Wednesday.
The county treasurer’s job was open because the current treasurer, Kirke Sievers, has served a maximum of three four-year terms.
On election night, the leader to succeed Sievers was Toyer, a Marysville city councilman who runs a wealth management company. Just a few hundred votes behind was Sullivan, a three-term county councilman who’s stepping down from the seat Dunn and Rohrbough were seeking to fill.
Auditor Carolyn Weikel also must leave office because of term limits. The leading candidate for her position on Tuesday was Fell, the elections manager in her office, followed by Gobel, who works on elections issues for Secretary of State Kim Wyman and previously worked on elections in Snohomish County.
County Councilwoman Stephanie Wright, a Democrat, was cruising to an easy victory to retain her District 3 seat with 78.7% percent of the vote. Her opponent, Willie Russell, declared no political affiliation, but previously identified as a Democrat before a falling-out with local party officials.
Some countywide races had no competition this year.
County Executive Dave Somers and Assessor Linda Hjelle both ran unopposed for a second term.
Heidi Percy had no competition to be elected county clerk. Currently employed as a manager in the clerk’s office, Percy is set to take over for her boss, Sonya Kraski, who has served a maximum three terms.
Noah Haglund: 425-339-3465; firstname.lastname@example.org. Twitter: @NWhaglund.