Opinion

Primary cause | Editorial

It looks as if the August primary election may not be such a sleeper after all.

In a three-way race for Washington’s 2nd Congressional seat, incumbent Rick Larsen is under assault from factions within his own political party, chiefly that of the San Juan County Democrats, who, over the weekend, July 26-27, voted 50-0, that’s right, 50 to zip, to endorse primary opponent Mike Lapointe, running as an independent (See page 5).

The top two vote-getters in the race, regardless of party affiliation, advance to the November general election. In addition to Lapointe, challenging Larsen from the left, Republican BJ Guillot, reportedly cut from conservative Tea Party cloth, is seeking election to the 2nd congressional seat as well.

The 2nd District encompasses the entirety of Island and San Juan counties, and portions of Skagit, Snohomish and Whatcom counties, mainly in areas west of Interstate 5.

Primary ballots must be postmarked by Aug. 5, date of the primary, or dropped off at any of the county Election drop-off boxes by 8 p.m., on election day. Do you know where your ballot is?

In the 2012, Larsen faced five challengers in the August primary, including Lapointe, at that time a 99 Percent Party candidate. Larsen drew nearly 64 percent of 5,683 votes cast in San Juan County that year. Lapointe received 4.3 percent, 244 votes in all.

So, why the rift?

Well, evidently Larsen, who has long enjoyed strong support in the heavily democratic, left-leaning San Juans, has local Dems disgruntled over his middle-of-the-road stance on the proposed coal export facility at Cherry Point, as well as the escalation of noise from Navy jets—the Growlers—stationed at NAS Whidbey.

Will local Dems’ “dissing” of Larsen and embrace of Lapointe prove an aberration, or tip of the iceberg? Results will tell.

Do you know where your ballot is?

 

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