Expect no Republican breakthroughs in the blue stronghold of Washington’s 29th.
With the first ballot counts now posted, it’s looking all Democrat for the legislative district that covers South Tacoma, Parkland and parts of Lakewood and University Place.
Here’s the latest breakdown of the district’s races:
Steve Conway (D) vs. Terry Harder (R)
Veteran state Democratic representative Steve Conway appears headed to an easy victory tonight in the battle for the 29th District state Senate seat left open by longtime lawmaker Rosa Franklin’s retirement.
After tonight’s initial ballot counts, Conway, 66, the secretary-treasurer for UFCW Local 81 who has served as the 29th district’s representative for 18 years, held a double-digit lead over Republican U.S. Bank business specialist and Republican Terry Harder.
Conway campaigned on his Legislative record and experience, touting a variety of local projects he has helped to win state funding for while in the Legislature.
Harder, meanwhile, emphasized small business growth, job creation and financial reforms in government.
House Position 1:
Connie Ladenburg (D) vs. Steven Cook (R)
In the race for the 29th District’s Position 1 House seat vacated by Conway, Democrat Connie Ladenburg holds a large lead and appears headed to Olympia.
Following initial ballot counts, Ladenburg, 60, a former two-term Tacoma City Councilwoman, led by double-digits over Republican Steven Cook, a former city councilman for the eastern Washington town of George.
Ladenburg campaigned on championing educational and social service causes, while Cook ran on a platform of government spending and budget reforms.
Already holding big local name recognition, Ladenburg also outraised Cook, pulling in more than $51,000 to Cook’s $2,100, campaign finance records show.
House Position 2:
Steve Kirby (D) vs. Jesse Miller (R)
Democrat and longtime state Representative Steve Kirby appears headed back to Olympia, holding a sizeable lead over his Republican challenger, Jesse Miller.
Kirby, who has served in the state house for 10 years and on the Tacoma City Council for 15 years, campaigned on his experience, listing his priorities as creating jobs, reforming education, providing affordable health care and making neighborhoods safe
Miller, an East Tacoma activist and entrepreneur who changed her life after a felony drug conviction as a teenager, said she was in part inspired to run due to a negative experience she had with Kirby while lobbying for a legislative bill. Among other things, she promoted small business growth, job creation and corrections reforms as some of her top issues.