Update on Nov. 7 at 4:52 p.m.: I-1351 now leads by almost 9,000. So far, 1.75 million votes have been counted.
Update at 4:25 p.m.: And just like that, King updates its count and I-1351 is back in the lead with almost 6,000 votes out of 1.7 million counted.
Update at 3:57 p.m.: Initiative 1351 now trailing by a scant 37 votes out of 1.67 million votes counted. A difference of 2,000 votes or less (and less than one-half a percentage point) would trigger a recount.
Update at 8:49 p.m.,: Initiative 1351 is now leading by 4,660 votes out of 1.62 million votes counted. Spokane and Asotin counties in Eastern Washington both flipped to just barely in support the measure, joining the eight Western Washington counties where the initiative is already leading.
Update at 6:12 p.m.,: Initiative 1351 now trails by only about 1,800 votes out of more than 1.5 million votes counted. A difference of 2,000 votes or less (and less than one-half a percentage point) would trigger a recount.
Update at 5:50 p.m.: Initiative 1351 now trails by only about 4,300 votes out of more than 1.5 million votes counted.
Update at 10:25 a.m.: Not much has changed Thursday morning. Initiative 1351 still behind by about 11,400 votes out of almost 1.4 million counted.
Update at 8 p.m.: Initiative 1351 trailed by about 11,400 votes out of nearly 1.4 million counted Wednesday evening. So far, the measure has captured 49.59 percent of the vote statewide.
The initiative is leading in eight counties, all in Western Washington.
Original Wednesday post: In second-day returns, a statewide initiative to lower class sizes and beef up the rest of public schools’ staff was still trailing by about 10,000 votes Wednesday afternoon out of more than 1.3 million counted.
The measure, Initiative 1351, continued to lead in seven counties, mostly in the Puget Sound area, including King County, where it captured 53 percent of the vote in Tuesday’s returns.
On Tuesday, it had also led in Snohomish County, but by Wednesday afternoon, that county flipped from just barely in support to just barely opposed.
Although the margin is narrow, it’s not yet close enough for an automatic recount.
The contest was much tighter Tuesday than in 2000, when another class-size reduction measure, Initiative 728, won 72 percent of the vote. After repeatedly suspending that measure due to budget shortfalls, the Legislature eventually repealed it in 2012.