Serving Franklin County, WA

Write-ins leading races in Hatton, Kahlotus

HATTON — For the second time in the last three general elections, the new mayor and town council members may all be write-in candidates.

At the end of the first day of counting Tuesday night, Nov. 7, "write-in" was leading in all of the races.

The names of the write-ins were not available late election night.

All of the named candidates had received 7 votes at the end of the first tally; write-ins received 9 votes in all of the races.

Rhea Isaac appeared to be losing the mayoral race, with her 43.8% of the vote versus the write-ins 56.2%.

The unofficial first counts were identical across the board, with Barbara Pence trailing for Position No. 2, Eric Rawson trailing in Position No. 4 and Linda Anderson trailing in Position No. 5.

Ironically, Isaac won her seat on the town council as a write-in for Position No. 1 in the Nov. 9, 2021, general election. Others riding the 2021 write-in wave included Justine Pherigo and Ignacio Mendoza.

City of Kahlotus

While a write-in winning an election is uncommon, it does happen.

And in the nearby city of Kahlotus, in Franklin County, a write-in is leading in the race for the At-Large Town Council Position No. 6.

There, a write-in candidate is leading Shirley L. Ayers; the write-in candidate has 12 votes, or 54.5% of the vote. Ayers has received 10 votes, or 45.5%.

Write-ins are also putting up a strong showing for the Position Nos. 2 and 4seats.

In the Position No. 2 race, Michael Robaitaille is leading a write-in by 8 votes, 14-6. He has 70%, with the write-in at 30%.

The early results for the Position No. 4 race show James C. Hagans leading a write-in by just 5 votes, 13-8. Hagans has 61.9% of the vote compared to the write-in's 38.1%

The only Kahlotus candidate not facing a write-in insurgency is Maria Cruzan, who has 21 votes (100% of the ballots cast) in her race for At-Large Position No. 5.

More to count

Franklin County has more ballots to count.

The next tally will be released at 5 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 8.

Late-arriving ballots will continue to be counted until certification Nov. 28.

As of Tuesday night, the county was reporting a voter turnout of 19.11%.

Author Bio

Roger Harnack, Publisher

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Roger Harnack is the co-owner/publisher of Free Press Publishing. Having grown up Benton City, Roger is an award-winning journalist, photographer, editor and publisher. He's one of only two editorial/commentary writers from Washington state to ever receive the international Golden Quill. Roger is dedicated to the preservation of local media, and the voice it retains for Eastern Washington.


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