CategoryLocal

Three Sequim candidates complete Ballotpedia’s Candidate Connection survey

Three city council candidates in Sequim, Wa., completed Ballotpedia’s Candidate Connection survey in recent weeks. Sequim is located in Clallam County, in the northwestern corner of the state.

Ballotpedia is covering municipal elections on Nov. 2 in Clallam County’s three cities—Port Angeles, Sequim, and Forks. In Sequim, eleven offices are up for election, including seats on the city council, the school board, and the water district.

Incumbent Rachel Anderson is running for Sequim City Council Position No. 4 against challenger Daryl Ness. She listed the following three key campaign messages:

  • “I believe I’m the best choice for City Council seat 4 because I have shown my dedication and commitment to the community. My time as Head Start Policy Council Chairperson, an Olympic Community Action Programs Board Member, a Sequim Education Foundation Board Member, a Sequim Farmers and Artisans Market Board Member and Interim Board President, and as an appointed City Council Member have taught me valuable leadership lessons. It is so critical to the well-being of our community that we come together as team, despite our differences, in order to help the people in our community thrive!
  • My top priority is doing everything we can in order to bring more affordable housing to Sequim. Action items I would promote include: applying for grants and building partnerships federally, state-wide, and locally in order to build affordable housing for the workforce within our community.
  • I promote trust and civility between Council members and the Sequim community by doing everything I can to role model the necessary skills of a council member. Since being appointed, trust and civility have been priorities for my role as a council member, considering all of the controversy and negative attitude toward Sequim and its leadership over the past couple of years. It’s so important that each council member does their part: actively listening, asking questions, and actively respecting the decisions of local agencies and organizations in order to keep our community safe. Great and trustworthy leaders take responsibility, are dependable, and match their actions to their words.”

Incumbent Brandon Janisse is running for Sequim City Council Position No. 5 against challenger Patrick Day. Janisee listed the following three key campaign messages:

  1. “Committing to a city government that is efficient, effective, responsible and transparent
  2. Remaining Non-Partisan in a Non-Partisan position
  3. Supporting Individuals and families who are healing from drug addiction and mental health issues”

Lowell Rathbun is running for Sequim City Council Position No. 6. against Keith A. Larkin. Neither candidate is the incumbent in the race. Rathbun listed the following three key campaign messages:

  • “We must bring transparency, trust, and civil discourse back to our city council.
  • Sequim is in an urgent housing crisis. Tackling this challenge is a top priority.
  • Our city must respond to our homeless, addicted and/or mentally neighbors in a compassionate manner.”

To read more about elections in Sequim and Clallam County in 2021, click here.



Cincinnati city council fixes error that would have made Issue 3 increase city council salaries instead of decrease them

On Sept. 30, the Cincinnati City Council passed an emergency ordinance to fix an error in the legal text of Issue 3 on the Nov. 2 ballot. The error would have made Issue 3 increase city council pay instead of decreasing it.

Issue 3, a citizen initiative, was designed to decrease city council pay to the median household income ($46,260 in 2021), among six other changes to provisions governing the city council and mayor. As of the beginning of 2021, the salary of a city council member was $60,000. After proponents submitted enough valid signatures for the initiative, the city council approved an ordinance on Sept. 1 officially putting Issue 3 on the ballot that said median family income ($62,941 in 2021) instead of median household income.

The city council’s Sept. 30 emergency ordinance states that the language in the initiative petition text (household) controls and will set the effective salary level if Issue 3 is approved.

According to the City Solicitor Andrew Garth, the error came about when a draft of the initiative text was sent to the city solicitor that had the word family instead of household. City staff drafted the initial ordinance based on that draft of the initiative text. However, initiative proponents had edited the petition text to change that one word before collecting signatures for the initiative. Initiative sponsors, city staff, and the board of elections did not notice the one-word difference until after the language was approved for the ballot on Sept. 16.

State Representative and city council candidate Tom Brinkman sponsored the initiative. In addition to the change to city council pay, the measure would

  • require the city council to approve any lawsuits filed on behalf of the city;
  • establish a one-year residence requirement for mayoral and city council candidates;
  • make it so the unelected candidate with the most votes at the last election fills city council vacancies instead of city council members designating a successor;
  • require the mayor to assign legislative proposals to the relevant committees within 30 days and to put proposals on the city council agenda within 30 days of them being reported out of committee;
  • make the mayor and city council members liable for purposeful or reckless violations of state open meeting laws; and
  • provide for a process for the removal of the mayor as set out in state law.

Local Ohio voters in Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, Toledo, Hamilton County, and Lucas County will decide nine local ballot measures on Nov. 2.

In 2021, Ballotpedia is covering local measures that appear on the ballot for voters within the top 100 largest cities in the U.S. and all state capitals, including those outside of the top 100 largest cities. Ballotpedia is also covering a selection of notable police-related and election-related measures outside of the top 100 largest cities. Ballotpedia is also covering all local measures in California and all statewide ballot measures.



How Clallam County’s cities vote in presidential elections

There is one county in America that has, since 1980, voted for the winning presidential candidate—Clallam County, Wa. The county’s 40-year record of voting for Republican and Democratic candidates reflects its political diversity. In Clallam County, elections, especially federal and state elections, tend to be closely decided. In 2020 and 2016, for example, Joe Biden (D) and Donald Trump (R) won the county by a margin of 3.37% and 2.28%, respectively. In 2012, voters in Clallam favored Barack Obama (D) over Mitt Romney (R) by a margin of .38%.

At the county level, Clallam’s political leanings can be hard to decipher. Precinct-level voting data reveal the county’s three cities—Port Angeles, Sequim, and Forks—and assorted unincorporated areas exhibit partisan voting patterns.

For this analysis, we sorted the county’s 68 voter precincts into four groups—those in Port Angeles, Sequim, and Forks, and those in unincorporated areas.

Clallam County had an estimated population of around 76,770 in 2020. Port Angeles, the county seat, had a population of around 20,000, while Sequim had a population of about 7,600. Forks had a population of about 3,862.

Overall, in the last four presidential elections, Port Angeles and Sequim have leaned Democratic, while Forks has shown a strong preference for Republican candidates. The rest of the county has narrowly favored Republican candidates.

  1. In 2020 in Port Angeles, Biden won 54.678% of the vote to Trump’s 41.16%. In Sequim, Biden won 56.77% to Trump’s 41.21%. In Forks, Trump won 65.36% to Biden’s 31.96%. Trump won the rest of the county by a margin of .77%. 
  2. In 2016 in Port Angeles, Hillary Clinton (D) won 49.42% of the vote to Trump’s 41.47%. In Sequim, Clinton won 48.99% to Trump’s 43.96%. In Forks, Trump won 59.98% to 30.58%. The rest of the county favored Trump over Clinton by a margin of 6.94%.
  3. In 2012 in Port Angeles, Obama won 54.88% of the vote to Romney’s 42.01%. In Sequim, Romney won 48.96% to Obama’s 48.65%. In Forks, Romney won 55.88% to Obama’s 40.51%. Romney won the rest of the county by a margin of 3.49%.
  4. In 2008 in Port Angeles, Obama won 55.71% to John McCain’s (R) 41.85%. In Sequim, Obama won 50.24% to McCain’s 47.52%. In Forks, McCain won 56.31% to Obama’s 40.19%. Obama won the rest of the county by a margin of .13%.

Clallam County is holding municipal elections in its three cities—Port Angeles, Sequim, and Forks— in 2021. Twenty-six offices are up for election in those cities.



How Clallam County has voted in recent presidential primaries

Clallam County, Wash., has a long record of voting for the winning presidential candidate. Since 1980, the county has voted for the Republican and Democratic candidates that would go on to become president—Ronald Reagan (R), George H.W. Bush (R), Bill Clinton (D), George W. Bush (R), Barack Obama (D), Donald Trump (R), and Joe Biden (D).

The general election isn’t the only opportunity voters get to influence who becomes president. Before the general election, major and minor party candidates compete in primaries or caucuses to become their party’s nominee on the ballot.

Here is how Clallam County has voted in Republican and Democratic primaries going back to 2008.

2020

In 2020, Washington held its Democratic primary on March 10. Joe Biden won Washington’s primary with 37.94% of the vote. Bernie Sanders followed with 36.57%. In Clallam, Biden won 38.91% of the vote, followed by Sanders with 29.97%.

President Donald Trump was the only candidate on the ballot in Washington’s Republican primary.

2016

In 2016, Washington Democrats held a caucus on March 26 and Republicans held a primary on May 24. In the Democratic caucus, Bernie Sanders earned 72.7% of the vote, while Hillary Clinton earned 27.1%. One-hundred and one delegates were up for grabs. Seventy-four were allocated to Sanders. Clinton earned 27. In Clallam County, Sanders earned 68.6% of the vote to Clinton’s 31%.

In the Republican primary, Trump won 75.5% of the vote. Ted Cruz won 10.8%. In Clallam County, Trump won 78.1%, while Cruz won 9.3%.

2012

In 2012, the Republican Party of Washington held a caucus on March 3. Overall, Mitt Romney earned 37.65% of the vote, while Ron Paul earned 24.81%. Rick Santorum placed third, earning 23.81%. In Clallam County, Romney earned 30.2%, Santorum earned 26.2%, and Paul earned 25.9%.

President Barack Obama ran unopposed in the Democratic caucus.

2008

In 2008, the Democratic Party of Washington used a four-step process to determine the delegates it would send to the Democratic National Convention, starting with a statewide caucus open to all voters on Feb. 9. Barack Obama won 67.56% of the vote, while Hillary Clinton won 31.15%. Obama earned 52 delegates to Clinton’s 26. In Clallam, Obama earned 71.8% of the vote, while Clinton earned 25.6%.

The Republican Party in Washington held both a caucus, on Feb. 9, and a primary, on Feb. 19. Eighteen delegates were up for grabs in the caucus and 19 were up for grabs in the primary. Overall, John McCain won 25.9% of the vote in the caucus and 49.44% in the primary. Mike Huckabee followed, winning 23.52% in the caucus and 24.06% in the primary. In Clallam County, voters gave McCain 46.9% of the vote and Huckabee 22.5%. County-level data was not available for the Feb. 9 caucus.

2004

In 2004, Washington held its Democratic caucus on Feb. 7. Overall, John Kerry won 48.41% of the vote. Howard Dean followed with 29.99%. In Clallam, Kerry earned 48.2% of the vote, while Dean earned 33.1%.

President George W. Bush ran unopposed in Washington.

Clallam County is holding municipal elections in its three cities—Port Angeles, Sequim, and Forks— in 2021. Twenty-six offices are up for election in those cities.



Newest Clayton County Board of Education member elected

The special general election for Clayton County Board of Education District 8 in Georgia was on Sept. 21. The filing deadline to run passed on Aug. 11. 

Joy Tellis Cooper (D) defeated Arvis Walker (D) for the District 8 seat.

A runoff election was initially scheduled for Oct. 19, but it was not needed after only two candidates filed to run.

As of 2018, Clayton County Public Schools served 54,840 students. It is the fifth-largest school district in Georgia. 

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Forks: The longest-tenured officeholders up for re-election in Forks, Wash.

Six incumbents are running for re-election in Forks, Wash., in the Nov. 2 general election. In total, seven offices are up for election in the city.

In Forks, one incumbent is the mayor, one is a city councilmember, two are school board members, one is a park and recreation commissioner, and one is a fire district commissioner.

  1. Joe Soha, Forks City Council Position No. 3
  2. Tim Fletcher, Mayor
  3. Kevin Hinchen, Quillayute Valley School District Director District No. 2
  4. Ron Hurn, Quillayute Valley School District Director District No. 4
  5. Donald Grafstrom, Quillayute Park and Recreation Board Commissioner Position No. 1
  6. Tom Rosmond, Fire District #6 Position No. 3

The longest-serving incumbent running for re-election in Forks is Quillayute Park and Recreation Commissioner Grafstrom. Grafstrom was first elected in 2013, and re-elected in 2017. He is running unopposed in the general election.

The next longest-serving incumbent is Fire District #6 Commissioner Rosmond, who was first elected in 2015. He is running unopposed in the general election.

Quillayute Valley School District Directors Hinchen and Hurn were both elected in 2017. Both are running unopposed in the general election.

Mayor Fletcher was first elected in 2017. He is running against Steve Wright in the general election. City councilmember Joe Soha was also elected in 2017. He is running against Sarah Holmes for the No. 3 seat.

The City Council Position No. 3 race is the only race in Forks that does not feature a sitting officeholder. Clinton W. Wood and Josef Echeita advanced from the Aug. 2 primary. Wood earned 58.7% of the vote, while Echeita earned 31.1%.

Forks is located in Clallam County, Wash.. Clallam County is holding municipal elections in its three cities— Port Angeles, Sequim, and Forks. Twenty-six offices are up for election in those cities. In 19 of those races, an incumbent is running for re-election.

To read more about elections in Clallam County, click here.



Sequim: The longest-tenured officeholders up for re-election in Sequim, Wash.

Six incumbents are running for re-election in Sequim, Wash., in the Nov. 2 general election. In total, eleven offices are up for election in the city.

In Sequim, three of those incumbents are city councilmembers, two are port commissioners, and one is on the Port Angeles School Board.

  • Sarah Kincaid, Sequim City Council Position No. 2
  • Mike Pence, Sequim City Council Position No. 3
  • Rachel Anderson, Sequim City Council Position No. 4
  • Ray L. Henninger, Park and Recreation Commissioner Position No. 1
  • Frank Pickering, Park and Recreation Commissioner Position No. 2
  • Alan Frank, Sunland Water District Commissioner Position No. 3

Park and Recreation Commissioner Frank Pickering is the longest-serving incumbent running for re-election in Sequim. Pickering was first elected in 2013, and re-elected in 2017. He is running unopposed in the general election for the No. 2 seat.

Park and Recreation Commissioner Ray Henninger is the next longest-serving incumbent running for re-election in Sequim. He was appointed to the position on Oct. 10, 2018, after the previous incumbent retired. Henninger, like fellow commissioner Pickering, will not face a challenger in the general election.

Sunland Water District Commissioner Alan Frank was appointed to the position on Jan. 1, 2020. He is running unopposed in the general election.

Sequim city councilmembers Pence and Kincaid were both appointed on April 27, 2020. Pence is running against challenger Vicki L. Lowe, while Kincaid is running against challenger Kathy Downer. Councilmember Anderson was appointed on February 16, 2021. She is running against Daryl Ness.

Five races in Sequim— two school board seats, two city council seats, and one seat on Fire District #3— do not feature an incumbent.

Sequim is located in Clallam County, Wash. Clallam County is holding municipal elections in its three cities— Port Angeles, Sequim, and Forks. Twenty-six offices are up for election in those cities. In 19 of those races, an incumbent is running for re-election.

To read more about elections in Clallam County, click here.



Port Angeles: The longest-tenured officeholders up for re-election in Port Angeles, Wash.

Seven incumbents are running for re-election in Port Angeles, Wa.sh, in the Nov. 2 general election. In total, eight offices are up for election in the city.

In Port Angeles, four of those incumbents are city councilmembers, two are port commissioners, and one is on the Port Angeles School Board.

  • LaTrisha Suggs, Port Angeles City Council Position No. 1
  • Mike French, Port Angeles City Council Position No. 2
  • Lindsey Schromen-Wawrin, Port Angeles City Council Position No. 3
  • Kate Dexter, Port Angeles City Council Position No. 4
  • Sarah Methner, Port Angeles School District Director Position No. 1
  • Colleen McAleer, Port of Port Angeles Commissioner District No. 1
  • Steven Burke, Port of Port Angeles Commissioner District No. 2

Sarah Methner, the president of the Port Angeles School District Board, is the longest-serving incumbent running for re-election in Port Angeles in the Nov. 2 general election. Methner was first elected in 2009, and re-elected in 2013 and 2017. She is running against Lola Moses.

Port of Port Angeles Commissioner Colleen McAleer, who occupies the District No. 1 seat, was first elected in 2013, and re-elected in 2013 and 2017. She is running unopposed in her race.

Three of the four Port Angeles city councilmembers up for re-election—Dexter, Schromen-Wawrin, and French— were elected for the first time in 2017. Dexter is running against John W. Procter for the Position No. 4 seat, while Schromen-Wawrin is running against Jena Stamper for the No. 3 seat. French, who holds the No. 2 seat, is running against John Madden.

Councilmember Suggs was appointed to the position on Dec. 19, 2019. She is running against Adam Garcia.

Port of Port Angeles Commissioner Steven Burke, who occupies the District No. 2 seat, was appointed on March 27, 2021. Like fellow commissioner McAleer, he does not face a challenger in the general election.

The Port Angeles School District Director Position No. 2 election is the only Port Angeles election that does not feature an incumbent. Incumbent Cindy Kelly did not file for re-election. The race features Mary Hebert and Gabi Johnson.

Port Angeles is located in Clallam County, Wash. Clallam County is holding municipal elections in its three cities— Port Angeles, Sequim, and Forks. Twenty-six offices are up for election in those cities. In 19 of those races, an incumbent is running for re-election.

To read more about elections in Clallam County, click here.



Recall elections scheduled for four Wisconsin school board members

Recall elections seeking to remove four of the seven members of the Mequon-Thiensville School District Board of Education in Wisconsin are being held on Nov. 2, 2021. Board members Wendy Francour, Erik Hollander, Akram Khan, and Chris Schultz are on the ballot. The candidate filing deadline is Oct. 5. If more than two candidates file in any race, the Nov. 2 election will become a primary, and a general election will be held on Nov. 30.

Recall supporters said they started the recall due to concerns about the school district’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, critical race theory, a decline in academic performance metrics, and an inability to get answers from board members. The other three members of the board were not eligible for recall as they had not served in the office for at least one year.

A spokeswoman for the district said, “MTSD’s focus remains on advancing our vision and planning for a robust learning experience for all students for the 2021-2022 school year.”

To get the recall on the ballot, recall supporters had to collect approximately 4,200 signatures per board member in 60 days. The number of signatures was equal to 25% of the votes cast in the 2018 gubernatorial election in the school district. Supporters submitted more than 4,400 signatures on Aug. 23. All four members named in the recall petitions filed challenges against the petitions on Sept. 2. Recall supporters submitted a rebuttal to the challenges on Sept. 7. The challenges were sustained when it came to duplicate signatures but were not sustained on other matters. The petitions were found to be sufficient on Sept. 21, allowing the recall elections to be scheduled.

Ballotpedia has tracked 67 school board recall efforts against 174 board members so far in 2021—the highest number of school board recall efforts we have tracked in one year since beginning this coverage in 2010. The next-highest year was in 2010 with 38 recall efforts against 91 school board members.

In the first half of 2021, Ballotpedia tracked 164 recall efforts against 262 officials. This was the most recall efforts for this point in the year since the first half of 2016, when we tracked 189 recall efforts against 265 officials. In comparison, we tracked between 72 and 155 efforts by the midpoints of 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020.

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Boston mayoral candidates receive new endorsements following primary wins

Boston’s mayoral candidates received new endorsements following the Sept. 14 primary election. 

Michelle Wu, who received the most votes in the seven-candidate primary field at 33.4%, has been endorsed by gubernatorial candidate and state Sen. Sonia Chang-Diaz (D), state Rep. Liz Miranda (D), and SEIU 1199, which represents healthcare workers. 

Annissa Essaibi George received recent endorsements from the local sprinkler fitters union and IBEW Local 103, which represents electrical workers. Essaibi George was second in the primary with 22.5%.

Essaibi George had several union endorsements heading into the primary, along with backing from former Boston Police Commissioner William Gross. Wu also had several endorsements from unions as well as state legislators.

Media outlets have described Wu as more progressive and Essaibi George as more moderate. The candidates themselves have not been campaigning with those labels.

Essaibi George said she does “not neatly fit in a box.” She said after election night that she wants “progress to be made — real progress — not just abstract ideas that we talk about.” Wu said, “In city government, it’s about getting things done, not being judged on a scorecard of whether you said yes or no on certain things.” She described the race as “a choice about whether City Hall tackles our biggest challenges with bold solutions or we nibble around the edges of the status quo.”

The candidates offer different backgrounds, policy areas of emphasis, and positions on issues including housing and policing. For more information, see our coverage below.