King County Elections counted an additional 100,000 ballots Thursday and has at least 97,000 more on hand to count in the coming days for all races across the county.
November’s election was driven by concerns about policing, public safety, the drug crisis and homelessness, with many candidates promising to focus on hiring more officers and tamping down on crime and disorder.
Voters wanted change. In an August Crosscut/Elway poll, 44% of likely voters said they want to significantly change the direction of the Council. Another 41% said they want to modify the Council’s direction a little. Just three incumbents sought reelection, and all three trailed their opponents on election night.
Business and real estate interests spent more than $1.1 million through political action committees in support of candidates who promised a law-and-order approach to leadership and said they’d avoid new taxes in Seattle.
In West Seattle’s District 1, Rob Saka, a tech lawyer who garnered business support in the race, leads with 57%. Maren Costa, a tech worker and climate activist, has 42.5%, nearly 2 points more than Tuesday’s count.
In south Seattle’s District 2, Tanya Woo, a Chinatown-International District activist who launched a nightwatch during the COVID-19 pandemic, has 51.5%. Incumbent Tammy Morales is up three points from election night with 48.2%. Morales now trails by just 634 votes.
In District 3, which includes Capitol Hill and Madison Valley, cannabis industry veteran Joy Hollingsworth lost a little ground Thursday night and now has 56%. Hollingsworth was the first candidate in this race to net an endorsement from Mayor Bruce Harrell. Alex Hudson, former executive director of Transportation Choices Coalition, trails with 43%.
In northeast Seattle’s District 4, Maritza Rivera, former deputy director of the Seattle Office of Arts and Culture, leads with 52.9%. Tech consultant and urbanist Ron Davis gained 2.5 points and now has 46.7%.
Former King County Superior Court judge Cathy Moore leads equity consultant ChrisTiana ObeySumner 66.6% to 33% in the race to represent north Seattle’s District 5.
In northwest Seattle’s District 6, Strauss has moved into the lead with 50.1% to Fremont Chamber of Commerce director Pete Hanning’s 49.4%. Strauss is up by just 225 votes.
District 7, which includes Downtown and Queen Anne, is a race between incumbent Andrew Lewis and former Queen Anne Community Councilmember Bob Kettle. Kettle still leads with 53.2%, but Lewis gained 2.4 points on Thursday and now has 46.2%. Lewis is 1,356 votes behind Kettle.
At-large Seattle City Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda is running for King County Council’s 8th District seat and extended her lead over Burien Mayor Sofia Aragon on Thursday. Mosqueda has 52.4% to Aragon’s 47.3%. If Mosqueda is elected, the Seattle City Council will have 20 days after her final day in office to appoint a replacement.
Voters are also tasked with renewing the Seattle Housing Levy this election, a property tax that pays for subsidized affordable-housing construction and operations. After Thursday, the Housing Levy was passing 67.6% to 32.4%, all but guaranteeing its victory.
Because Washington votes by mail, it can take days or even weeks for elections to be decided. Historically, results in Seattle trend left in later counts because younger, more liberal voters often vote at the 11th hour.
King County Elections will provide its next ballot count update around 4 p.m. Friday.
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