≡ Menu

The August 3, 2021 Lakewood Primaries

Pierce votes

On Tuesday August 3 we had primaries in Pierce County, and in Lakewood four out of seven council seats were up for grabs. This reflects the Lakewood election cycle. Council elections happen in odd years, with three seats in the 2015–2019–2023 cycle, and four seats 2017–2021–2025.

The results were unsurprising.

Mary Moss, the incumbent in Position 1, was unopposed. This meant that she wasn’t on the ballot paper, and there wasn’t an opportunity for a write-in. Republican Jason Whalen, on his Facebook page, quoted Mary Moss, regarding his 2020 run for Pierce County Council: “Jason doesn’t have a partisan agenda; he works on behalf of the people – not of special interests or Party ideology. That’s why – though I am a Democrat — I am endorsing Jason…”.

Jason Whalen and Mary Moss have both been council members since 2010, and under their watch parts of the City have witnessed environmental devastation. Someone should be standing against Mary Moss, and we’re now relying on a write-in long-shot.

Looking at the contested primaries, in Position 2 Mike Brandstetter topped the poll, with 5,293 votes, which was 71.09% of the total. Brandstetter, like Mary Moss, has been a council member since 2010, and it looks like he’ll be on the Council another four years… unless Amelia Escobedo, who came second with 22.63% of the vote, can do something special.

Then there’s Position 5. This is interesting, because Patti Belle, the current incumbent, is an appointee. She took over from John Simpson, when he moved out of the City. Patti Belle wasn’t the only person who applied for the vacant seat. Another person who applied was Ria Johnson-Covington, who stood against Simpson in 2017 and got 32.92% of the vote. This year Johnson-Covington came second in the 2021 Primary for Postion 5, so she’s still in the race.

Position 3 is occupied by Jason Whalen. He won the primary convincingly, getting 4802 votes, which was 64.04% of the total. In second place was Siabhom Ayuso, with 1501 votes.

From a statistical point of view, Whalen did signficantly worse than Brandstetter and Belle, who respectively got 71.09% and 69.64% of the vote. The effect was small — if you’re interested, Cramer’s V on the chi-square test was .07. Yet there was *some* effect, and it does seem that there were a few voters that Whalen turned off, that Brandstetter and Belle didn’t. It’s now up to Siabhon Ayuso, between now and November, to leverage the WNE (Whalen Negativity Effect) in her favor.

{ 1 comment… add one }

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.