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Editorial: A recap of our general election endorsements

Get your ballot in by mail or drop box soon to make sure it counts in the Nov. 3 election.

By The Herald Editorial Board

The Nov. 3 general election is expected to generate near-record levels of ballot returns for Snohomish County, the rest of the state and the nation.

Voters who are looking for information about ballots and voting can review Snohomish County Auditor Garth Fell’s Oct. 23 guest commentary in The Herald.

A list of drop box locations for Snohomish County voters can be found at More election and voting information can be found at

And below is a recap of the editorial board’s endorsements for several races and measures on local ballots. Full endorsement editorials can be found online at


President/Vice president: Joseph R. Biden and Kamala Harris, Democrats: Biden, throughout nearly 50 years of public service as a senator and vice president has exhibited the political experience, the reputation among world and national leaders, and the ability to form coalitions among diverse partners to restore neglected and abused standards for normalcy, the rule of law — and most importantly — the desire to serve the needs of the country and the well-being of its people.

Congressional District 1: Suzan DelBene, Democrat: During her tenure in the House, DelBene has been a valued voice on issues related to foreign trade, labor and employment, technology, consumer privacy and data protection and health care.

Congressional District 2: Rick Larsen, Democrat: With work ahead next year to rebuild the economy in the district, the state and the nation and make investments in transportation and other infrastructure, Larsen’s experience and acumen will be needed in both Washingtons.


Ballot measures

Referendum 90; Comprehensive Sexual Health Education: Vote to approve. Approving Referendum 90 will assure all students throughout the state will have access to instruction that can help them make informed decisions about their health and well-being, while preserving each parent’s right to know what is being presented and the ability to decide what’s best for their child.

Engrossed Senate Joint Resolution 8212: Vote to approve. A yes vote to amend the state constitution will ensure that money in a newly created trust fund for long-term care for seniors is invested wisely by the Washington State Investment Board — and not left to collect only minimal returns.

State offices

Governor: Jay Inslee, Democrat: Inslee’s course of treatment regarding the pandemic has resulted in serious impacts for businesses and individuals, but by following the science and tracking the data, it also has saved lives. … Tested by leading the state through the pandemic, Inslee has earned the trust of a majority of the state’s voters.

Lieutenant Governor: Denny Heck, Democrat: Heck’s past work in both state and federal offices and the institutional knowledge that his resume provides should give the voters’ confidence he can succeed in this increasingly important role.

Secretary of State: Kim Wyman, Republican: Wyman has overseen a range of programs to reform and update the state’s registration and election system, including the update of the statewide database — VoteWA — that have allowed roll out of registration and other improvements while safeguarding election security. Wyman, during her two terms, has helped build that trust in our elections and deserves a third term.

Treasurer: Mike Pellicciotti, Democrat: At a time when state lawmakers are confronting an estimated $4.5 billion shortfall in revenue for this and the coming two-year budget, they will need the trusted counsel of the state treasurer. Pellicciotti can draw on his current relationships in the House and the Senate to that end.

Auditor: Pat (Patrice) McCarthy, Democrat: With the state and local governments confronting ever-tightening budgets because of the pandemic, the public needs a close eye kept on spending and financial regulations and easy access to the findings of the Auditor’s Office. McCarthy has shown able stewardship of her office, which in return has helped assure good stewardship of public finances.

Attorney General: Bob Ferguson, Democrat: Ferguson’s record as attorney general has benefited from the work of the “partners and associates” in the state’s law firm, but the attorney general is the person responsible for leading that practice and establishing its priorities. In that role, Ferguson has served the legal needs of the state well and warrants a third term in office.

Commissioner of Public Lands: Hilary Franz, Democrat: While it’s true that in recent decades not enough emphasis has been put on effective forest management and fire prevention, Franz during her term has been successful in working to reverse that history. She won increased funding from state lawmakers that has bolstered not only resources for firefighting but for forest health and fire prevention.

Superintendent of Public Instruction: Chris Reykdal, nonpartisan: Reykdal has won approval for more than 25 pieces of legislation he has proposed, among them returning civics as a mandatory graduation requirement, expansion of training in skilled trades and delinking of high-stakes testing from graduation requirements. Reykdal has shown himself as someone who has worked toward the best interests of students.

State Supreme Court

Justice, Position 3: Racquel Montoya-Lewis: Her work as a superior court judge, tribal court jurist and an educator — and especially her perspective as a Native American woman — are invaluable to the court and the people of Washington state.

Justice, Position 6: G. Helen Whitener: In addition to her professional judicial and court resume, Whitener can draw on her experience as a Black immigrant from Trinidad and as an openly gay woman.


Snohomish County Council, District 4: Jared Mead, Democrat: While his tenure on the county council has been brief, Mead has moved quickly to build solid working relationships with a politically diverse but largely cooperative council.

Snohomish Superior Court

Judge, Position 8: Robert Grant, nonpartisan: Grant’s experience as a prosecutor and as a pro tem judge has prepared him well to succeed Judge Eric Lucas.

Snohomish County PUD, District 1 Commissioner: Considering Sid Logan’s three years on the board and a good balance of experience and leadership now among its three members, Logan should earn the support of voters for a full six-year term for the nonpartisan post.

State Legislature

Legislative District 1

Senate: Derek Stanford, Democrat: Stanford has shown himself to be a pragmatic and reasoned lawmaker who has ably managed the transition from House to Senate

House, Position 1: Davina Duerr, Democrat: Duerr’s performance in her first session as a lawmaker showed her to be up to its tasks and responsibilities.

House, Position 2: Shelley Kloba in her four years in the House has shown herself as an effective legislator and warrants a third term.

Legislative District 10

Senate: Helen Price Johnson, Democrat: With nearly 20 years of public service, and noting her past support among Island County voters, Price Johnson would provide experienced and considered representation for the 10th Legislative District.

House, Position 1: Angie Homola, Democrat: Homola’s past elected and planning experience with Island County prepares her to address her cited priorities for public health and safety, climate action and economic recovery.

House, Position 2: Dave Paul, an administrator at Skagit Valley College’s Mount Vernon campus, is the first Democrat to serve the district in several years, but he has provided good representation for constituents in a “purple” district and should be retained for the next two years.

Legislative District 21

House, Position 1: Strom Peterson, Democrat, has been a leader on environmental issues, and was the prime sponsor in the last two years on successful legislation. Vice chairman on both the environmental and capital budget committees, Peterson also has worked as cooperatively with Republicans as he has with fellow Democrats.

House, Position 2: Democrat Lillian Ortiz-Self’s perspective as an educator and counselor, paired with her three previous terms as a lawmaker, makes her the clear choice for the district’s voters.

Legislative District 32

House, Position 1: Cindy Ryu, Democrat, during her tenure, has been a reliable advocate for small businesses, public education and affordable housing and deserves the sixth term she seeks.

House, Position 2: Lauren Davis, Democrat has shown herself as a capable and consensus-building lawmaker. Voters can confidently return Davis to her responsibilities.

Legislative District 38

Senate: June Robinson, Democrat, would bring to the Senate valuable background regarding the state budget, having served as vice-chairwoman on the House appropriations committee. As she was seven years ago when appointed to succeed John McCoy in the House, Robinson was the right choice to follow him in the Senate.

House, Position 1: Emily Wicks, Democrat, has not served in public office before, but along with a degree in public relations and political science, she has past policy and political experience that would serve her work in the Legislature.

House, Position 2: Mike Sells, Democrat: As industry, school districts and local governments continue work on issues related to education, worker training and certification and support for local employers, Sells’ continued leadership and experience on these issues remains in demand.

Legislative District 39

Senate: Keith Wagoner, Republican: The editorial board endorsed Wagoner in his 2018 run because he quickly demonstrated an ability to earn bipartisan support for bills he sponsored, legislation based on good government principles and in the interests of his district and the state. Wagoner has since. continued that record.

House, Position 1: Claus Joens, Democrat: Claus has the demeanor and perspective to serve his district and seek consensus on the issues that will confront the Legislature during the next two years.

House, Position 2: Carolyn Eslick, Republican: When selected to fill the vacancy in 2017, Eslick was the choice of 12 of 17 county council members for the three counties, but the unanimous choice of Snohomish County’s two Republicans and three Democrats, a bipartisan vote of confidence that Eslick has shown was deserved.

Legislative District 44

House, Position 1: John Lovick, Democrat: Lovick has compiled a record of thoughtful legislation and consideration to the events and challenges he has faced during a nearly 50-year career as a public servant and official. He has served his district well and should be returned to his seat.

House, Position 2: Democrat April Berg’s background in education, planning and aerospace, and her past work as a legislative representative for the Edmonds School Board, prepares her well to serve the district and its residents.

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