Election night results always change in Oregon, even with vote by mail. This year they likely will change to a greater degree, since for the first time ballots postmarked today will count if they're received within a week.
That said, it's no fun to be cautious and say, "Let's wait until all the votes are in." Instead I say, "Let's look at the results as they are now!"
Assuming those results hold up -- again, a big assumption -- progressives like me should be pleased with how things are looking in local races.
Chris Hoy leads in the race for Salem Mayor over Chane Griggs. This would be a pleasing win for progressives, since conservatives have occupied that seat for quite a while, and Griggs pulled in big bucks from the usual Chamber of Commerce-type business groups.
Since Linda Nishioka was unopposed in the Ward 2 city council race, that's an easy win for a progressive.
The Ward 4 race is close. If Medlock hangs on to her lead, that's another win for a progressive.
I and quite a few others suspect that Julie Hoy's main qualification to run for the Ward 6 seat is that though unrelated to Chris Hoy, who has represented that ward on the city council, she shares his last name, so some voters probably cast a ballot for Hoy thinking she was his chosen successor or relative. It looks like she'll be a new conservative on the council.
Micki Varney, a progressive, has a slim lead over Chris Cummings in the Ward 8 race. She narrowly lost to Jim Lewis four years ago, so I'm hoping the second time is a charm for Varney, who is very well qualified to be a city councilor. (She was appointed to fill the seat after Lewis resigned.)
In the Democratic primary for the 19th House District in the state legislature, progressive Salem city councilor Tom Andersen leads Brad Witt by a fairly comfortable margin. Jackie Leung, another progressive city councilor, dropped out of the race but remained on the ballot and is getting over a quarter of the vote.
It looks like Tina Kotek will be the Democratic nominee for Governor. There were even more candidates, but I cut the screenshot off since nobody has heard of most of them.
In the Democratic primary for the new 6th Congressional District, which includes Salem, I'm thrilled that Andrea Salinas is so far ahead of Carrick Flynn. Flynn had way more money supporting his campaign that did any of the other candidates, and his almost daily mailers that arrived in our mailbox grew to be irritating as they went into our recycle bin.
Lastly, Kurt Schrader is getting beaten badly by Jamie McLeod-Skinner in the 5th Congressional District race which includes part of Marion County. Schrader has voted in Congress against progressive priorities numerous times, so this would be a sweet victory for those who want a real Democrat to represent them.
Oh, there also were Republican primaries. Since I'm a Democrat, I'm not reporting them, except to note that Christine Drazan is leading in the race to be the GOP nominee for Governor. May she and independent candidate Betsy Johnson lose badly to Tina Kotek in November, along with Republicans in other races.
Carpetbagger Brad Witt spent over $100K, a lot of it from Brian Clem, and only got 978 votes, according to the 11 pm report. That's about $100 a vote! He outspent Tom Andersen 6 to 1, but Tom did his usual relentless door knocking and sign planting nearly every day of his campaign to get the win. It's good to see people power beat money power once again in Salem.Tom will do it again this fall.
Posted by: Jim Scheppke | May 18, 2022 at 06:54 AM