by Craig Dimitri  

One of the final pieces of Election 2006 fell into place in the Pacific Northwest, late Monday night.  As of the weekend, several U.S. House campaigns were still not officially resolved, but the Wash. St/8th CD, in suburban Seattle, is no longer one of them.  The AP has officially declared freshman incumbent Rep. Dave Reichert (R) the winner over a young, 35-year-old challenger, Darcy Burner (D), making her first run for office.

It was a rare piece of good news for Republicans, who were able to see a freshman from a blue state return to the “other” Washington, something which many other House Republicans from blue states won’t be doing.

Stefan Sharkansky, the author of the Sound Politics blog, dedicated to politics in Seattle, Puget Sound and Washington State, broke the story on his blog, posting that the AP, via the Seattle Times, had declared Reichert the winner.  The reason for the delay: the voting-by-mail rules in Washington State, as most voters had cast their ballots via mail.  Burner’s campaign had hoped that the results from Democratic King County would help offset Reichert’s lead in other, more Republican areas in the suburban Seattle district. 

However, on Monday night, Reichert took the lead in returns from the King County portion of the district, thus making any 11th-hour victory by Burner virtually impossible.  Nonetheless, Burner’s campaign has refused to concede defeat.  They are hanging their hopes on approximately 20,000 King County absentee ballots that have yet to be counted, according to the AP – although it is impossible to know how many are from voters residing in the 8th CD.

The current tally, as of early Tuesday AM, November 14, has Reichert with 51.1% of the vote, and a 4,727-vote lead over Burner, who trails by over 2 percentage points at 48.9%, according to the AP.   It would seem likely that after the absentee ballots are counted, that Burner would then concede.

Sound Politics blog – http://soundpolitics.com/

Reichert official campaign site – http://www.davereichertforcongress.com/

Burner official campaign site – http://www.darcyburner.com/ 

Questions?  Comments?  Information?  You can contact Craig Dimitri at cdimitri1@yahoo.com. 

Seattle Timeshttp://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/home/index.html

AP story – http://www.kgw.com/sharedcontent/APStories/stories/D8LCJ4NG0.html

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