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February 5, 2013 at 6:28 PM
OLYMPIA — Washington has the second best election system in the United States, according to a 17-indicator index released Tuesday.
The Pew Charitable Trusts study is based on data from the 2010 election. It will be updated with 2012 statistics later this year, officials said.
North Dakota placed first in the index. Mississippi finished last. Oregon, which along with Washington uses all-mail voting, tied for third.
When the numbers were run for the 2008 election, however, Washington finished eighth.
The index touts itself as the “first-ever comprehensive assessment of election administration.” It is based on indicators ranging from voter registration and turnout rates to voting wait time, voting-information look-up tools and absentee-ballot return rate.
“It’s great news that Washington is one of the very top states when it comes to the accessibility and integrity of elections and voter registration,” Washington Secretary of State Kim Wyman wrote in a news release about the index. “I appreciate the hard work put into the index and how it provides an objective set of measurements to look at how we and other states are conducting elections.”
November 6, 2012 at 9:53 PM
Washington state Democrats predicted that President Obama’s re-election would send a message to Republicans that they need to be more open to compromise.
Obama was narrowly winning the popular vote in early returns, but Democrats gathered for an election night party at The Westin Seattle viewed it as a meaningful sign.
“The American people slapped the Republicans upside the head,” said Jim McDermott, D-Seattle, in an interview after easily winning re-election. “They said, ‘you can’t just be negative. You have to work with him.’
“Their whole attitude for the past four years has been to undermine Obama,” McDermott added, of Republicans. “That is over.”
Maria Cantwell, who was easily winning re-election to the U.S. Senate, said that Obama staying in office and Republicans keeping the U.S. House of Representatives signaled that voters want more bipartisanship.
Other Democrats were more ecstatic.
Rebecca Black, a Seattle software engineer, could not contain her excitement after Obama’s victory was announced at The Westin. She burst into repeated cheers of “Yes! Yes! Yes!”
“Our country is saved,” she said later. “We will continue our path to recovery. I can’t tell you how relieved I am.”
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