November 7, 2012
The votes are in, but not all counted… however… all of the state, regional and area races appear to have been decided. Locally, residents in Florence won’t know which of three declared write-in candidates won an open City Council spot until election workers hand count the ballots.
Here’s the rundown locally… In Dunes City, incumbent Mayor Rebecca Ruede easily held off a late write-in campaign on the part of Richard Koehler. Write ins will not be counted in that race as she picked up 516 votes; well over the 83 write-ins. Former Florence Police Chief Maury Sanders was the top recipient of votes in the contest for three Dunes City Council spots… he picked up 481 votes to 462 for Ed Scarberry and 455 for Jamie Mills. Both of the last two are incumbents. All three will take office in January. There were 107 votes written in… but none of them will be counted.
In Florence, Council member Nola Xavier, running unopposed, picked up 2453 votes. Joshua Greene was the only name on the ballot for one of two council spots; he had 2247 votes. There are 515 write-ins… they’ll be counted later this week. Three candidates expressed a desire for the seat… Joe Henry, Clarence Lysdale and Jane Nieborsky.
Reedsport Mayor Fends Off Challenge
In Reedport incumbent Mayor Keith Tymchuk easily outpaced challenger Merv Cloe with 65 ½ percent of the vote… 1119 to 579. There were three city council spots on the ballot… Brank Barth Jr. edged Ed O’Carrol 55-44 percent; DeeDee Murphy easily outpaced Edward Owen Spalione 71 to 28 percent; and Linda McCollum beat Charles Wade 64 to 36 percent.
Central Lincoln PUD
Former Lane County Commissioner and current Port Commissioner Bill Fleenor appears to have failed in his attempt to return to the board of directors for Central Lincoln PUD. Judy Matheny was appointed to the post six years ago when Fleenor won election to the county board. She was elected four years ago and appears to have won reelection by a margin of 2,789 to 2,504… 52 ½ per cent to 47.
Legislative – Roblan wins Senate Seat
Turning to local legislative races… Former Oregon House Co-Speaker and Coos Bay Democrat Arnie Roblan has won his bid for the Oregon Senate in district five. Roblan outdistanced Coos Bay Republican Scott Roberts by a 55 ½ to 44 ½ percent margin… winning 28,429 votes to Roberts 22,892.
Meanwhile, Roblan’s former seat in the Oregon House will remain in the possession of the Democrats. Caddy McKeown picked up just under 55-percent of the vote… 14,207 to Nancy Brouhard’s 42.6 percent or 11,090.
The wins mean the Democrats will hold a slight majority in the Oregon House… 32-28. They’ll also hang on to their 16-14 margin in the Senate.
Fourth Congressional District
Peter DeFazio easily outpaced Cave Junction Republican Art Robinson in a race that turned out to be both contentious and litigious. The Springfield Democrat had just over 200-thousand votes… nearly 59-percent… in the Fourth Congressional District. Robinson had nearly 135-thousand votes… just under 40-percent… in his second attempt at unseating DeFazio who has held the post since first elected in 1986.
Democrats will retain control of statewide offices for another four years. Incumbent Secretary of State Kate Brown faced stiff opposition from Knute Buehler but in the end won reelection with nearly 51-percent of the vote to Buehler’s 44-percent… that was a margin of 702-thousand to 612-thousand.
Ted Wheeler easily held his State Treasurer’s post by a 774-thousand to 487-thousand margin over Republican Tom Cox. Cox, who got on the ballot in a write-in campaign in the primary, had 37-percent of the vote to Wheeler’s 58 ½.
Ellen Rosenblum easily won election to the Oregon Attorney General’s Office, downing Republican James Buchal by a 55-40-percent margin.
The Labor Commissioner’s office is non-partisan, but Brad Avakian, a Democrat, edged former Republican legislator Bruce Starr by a 52-48 percent margin.
No to Pot, Gillnets, Transfer Taxes and Private Casinos.
The electorate in Lane County easily approved three ballot measures that would clean up Lane County Code and make “housekeeping” changes to the County Charter by a 3-to-1 margin.
Of the statewide ballot measures, there were no real suprises. The two measures referred by the legislature, 77 and 78 were approved. Voters said no to the legalization of pot, banning gillnets for non-tribal fishermen on the Columbia River, private casinos and phasing out the estate tax. They did approve measure 85 which would divert excess corporate tax collections… also known as the ‘kicker’ to fund K-12 education. Measure 79 which amends the constitution to prohibit real estate transfer taxes passed by a 60-40 margin.