Tim Eyman declares victory with his daughter Riley Eyman (left) Tuesday evening at Hyatt Regency in Bellevue. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

Tim Eyman declares victory with his daughter Riley Eyman (left) Tuesday evening at Hyatt Regency in Bellevue. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

Voters deliver a win for Eyman and concerns for Democrats

A conservative electorate, a tug of war in Mukilteo and other takeaways from Election Night

OLYMPIA — Voters across the state had their say Tuesday night on the cost of car tabs and the resurrection of affirmative action. In Snohomish County, they also weighed in on who should lead their cities and protect their safety.

Here are five takeaways from the first night of ballot counting.

Tim Eyman is less unpopular than car tabs and Sound Transit

It’s no secret Tim Eyman has bent or broken most every rule in the state’s election conduct rule book. Polls show he’s no longer held in high esteem by most who know of him. But when Eyman gives voters a chance to lower the cost of car tabs — as he did with Initiative 976 — they overlook his unscrupulous behavior to secure the savings. I-976 was passing in 35 of the state’s 39 counties Tuesday night, though it was pretty even in Island and Thurston counties. Close to two-thirds of voters in Snohomish and Pierce counties backed it. A lot of them likely suffered sticker shock following passage of Sound Transit 3 and counted on getting some relief. It didn’t happen.

Tuesday they exacted their revenge though Sound Transit lawyers will be busy trying to minimize the damage.

Campaign leader Linda Yates celebrates an early lead in the polls alongside KVI morning talk show host John Carlson during the anti-affirmative action group Reject Referendum 88 campaign’s election-watching event at 13 Coins in Bellevue on Tuesday. (Andy Bao/The Seattle Times via AP)

Campaign leader Linda Yates celebrates an early lead in the polls alongside KVI morning talk show host John Carlson during the anti-affirmative action group Reject Referendum 88 campaign’s election-watching event at 13 Coins in Bellevue on Tuesday. (Andy Bao/The Seattle Times via AP)

Affirmative action is still a bad idea to many

A generation ago, Washington voters barred the state from using affirmative action in deciding who to hire, admit to public colleges and award contracts. On Tuesday, nearly 52 percent cast ballots to keep the prohibition in place. Voters in 35 counties — the same ones backing I-976 — were rejecting Referendum 88, and by extension Initiative 1000 which seeks to remove the prohibition. Backers of affirmative action aren’t throwing in the towel. Referendum 88’s fortunes hinge on King County, where it enjoys great support and where the largest pile of ballots are left to be counted. But if they come up short, there are rumblings of trying again in 2020.

Where did all those conservatives come from?

Adam Fortney

Adam Fortney

Democrats in Snohomish County should be mildly concerned by what transpired Tuesday night. Majorities in the county backed lower car tabs and opposed affirmative action — the exact opposite positions of the Democratic Party.

Sheriff Ty Trenary, who was embraced by the party’s biggest names for pushing a mindset of compassion before corporal punishment of wrongdoers, is out. Brian Sullivan, a Democratic county councilman and political mainstay this century, trailed in his bid for county treasurer. And though Megan Dunn is winning a county council seat, her 52 percent in a district that’s always elected Democrats makes for a closer result than some anticipated. For Democrats, there’s much to review about their party’s performance. Less so for Republicans. They won a few city council and mayoral races and their party leaders appear to be cranking up the machinery for 2020.

This seat of power isn’t getting surplussed

Richard Emery

Richard Emery

A protracted tug-of-war for power between Mukilteo Mayor Jennifer Gregerson and her detractors on the City Council ended Tuesday. Voters overwhelmingly rejected a measure to get rid of the strong-mayor form of government in favor of one in which the council hires a manager for the city. And the electorate booted Councilman Scott Whelpley, an architect of the failed measure and vocal critic of Gregerson, from office. He is losing his re-election bid to a fellow councilman, Richard Emery.

A kibosh on kabooms is a good thing

Finally, fireworks may soon be out as a potential entertainment option in neighborhoods of Arlington and unincorporated urban areas of Snohomish County. Leaders of the city and the county wanted voters’ advice on whether to ban them. The answer they got was a resounding yes. Voters need to be vigilant. Politicians, as Eyman will tell you, don’t always do what the electorate wants.

Jerry Cornfield: 360-352-8623; jcornfield@herald net.com. Twitter: @dospueblos.

Talk to us

More in Local News

Logo for news use featuring the municipality of Lake Stevens in Snohomish County, Washington. 220118
Motorcyclist identified in fatal crash near Lake Stevens

Anthony Palko, 33, died Monday night after colliding with a passenger car. The juveniles in the car were taken to the hospital.

Marysville
Police: Marysville man shot sword-wielding roommate in self-defense

The roommates were arguing over eBay sales, according to police. Then one of them allegedly brandished a two-foot sword.

Logo for news use featuring the municipality of Lake Stevens in Snohomish County, Washington. 220118
Everett boy, 12, identified as Davies Beach drowning victim

Malachi Bell was one of three swimmers in distress Sunday in Lake Stevens. He did not survive.

Everett
Port of Everett hosting annual open house after pandemic hiatus

Also, Rustic Cork Wine Bar plans to open a second shop at Fisherman’s Harbor — the latest addition to the port’s “wine walk.”

Arlington Public Works employees use The Big Sidewalk Sucker to lift a concrete panel from the sidewalk. The device saves the city some money and time to level ground below the concrete. (Arlington Public Works)
This thing sucks and helps repair sidewalks in Arlington

Public works crews can remove heavy concrete panels from sidewalks, so the ground underneath can be restored.

New LGI Homes on Thursday, May 12, 2022 in Sultan, Washington. (Olivia Vanni / The Herald)
Red-hot housing market cools, a bit, in Snohomish County

The amount of housing inventory is rising. Demand is slowing. Higher mortgage rates are a cause.

John McKeon stands in front of a mobile headquarters vehicle while discussing the funding needs of Snohomish County Volunteer Search and Rescue on Wednesday, June 22, 2022, at the search and rescue headquarters in Snohomish, Washington. McKeon said a priority for the group is to find money for new covered parking for a number of vehicles that do not have a garage to be parked in. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Snohomish County Volunteer Search and Rescue wants rescuing

They’re asking for nearly $1 million in federal recovery dollars, but funding has been hard to come by.

Mike Kersey with Aiya Moore, daughter of Christina Anderson, right, talk about the condition of Nick’s Place in Everett, Washington on June 17, 2022.  (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
‘We’re all good people when we get clean and sober’

Who has fentanyl taken from us? A messenger who saved lives. A “street mom.” A grandpa who loved his grandkids “999 trillion times.”

Snohomish County Superior Courthouse in Everett, Washington on February 8, 2022.  (Kevin Clark / The Herald)
Bailiff’s comments leads to appeal of child rape conviction

Joseph Hall, of Snohomish, was sentenced to more than 13 years in prison. Now he faces another trial.

Most Read