ELECTION 2023: Turnout still small with one day left for primary voting

12:16 PM: Waiting till the last minute to vote? It’s not just you. The week’s first updates on ballot returns for tomorrow’s primary election are in, and turnout remains small – here in City Council District 1, 16.5 percent of ballots have been received as of this morning, just a sliver over the countywide turnout of 16.3 percent. It’s a short ballot – just five decisions to make:

City Council District 1, eight candidates (no incumbent)
County Council District 8, three candidates (no incumbent)
School Board District 6, three candidates (no incumbent)
Port Commission Position 5, three candidates
King County Veterans, Seniors, Human Services Levy

The optimal way to turn in your ballot is via a KC Elections dropbox, with three in West Seattle (plus one in White Center, one in South Park, and others around the county – here’s the list/map), which you can do up until 8 pm Tuesday night; if you’re sending it via USPS mail, do it early enough tomorrow (if not today) to assure it’ll have an August 1st postmark. If you’re still looking for info, our overview is here (and there’s been another City Council candidates’ forum since then – our coverage is here). If you’ve just arrived, you can still register to vote – here’s how.

2:49 PM: KCE is updating the received-ballot numbers every two hours (here). D-1 is now up to almost 18 percent.

35 Replies to "ELECTION 2023: Turnout still small with one day left for primary voting"

  • SMH July 31, 2023 (1:20 pm)


  • Maria July 31, 2023 (1:39 pm)

    Give the people better candidates to vote for. 

    • BlairJ July 31, 2023 (4:18 pm)

      Nobody “gives” us a group of candidates to choose from. People who think they can do better need to decide for themselves to run.

      • Maria August 1, 2023 (3:09 pm)

        I agree with your statement. No one gives us a group of candidates to choose from. I think I could have more accurately described what I meant by saying that the candidates that choose to run in the Seattle area are clearly uninspiring to most voters, hence the consistently low turnout numbers. I’m looking for return to common sense policies that put law abiding citizens at the forefront. By those measurements, I find myself continually disappointed in the candidates who run. Nevertheless, I vote. I just have no hope that it will have any effect in a city this bound by far left political ideology.

  • DRW July 31, 2023 (2:10 pm)

    Dropped mine off on Saturday!

  • Danimal July 31, 2023 (2:22 pm)

    So once again, the ultra-liberal faction, with no care in the world about how the money they want to spend from my wallet is used, is going to win. Come on people, get out and vote!! It’s your freaking DUTY!!

    • Josh July 31, 2023 (4:05 pm)

      I bet both top vote getters for the city council will be Saka and Tavel who among the group appear to be the most centrist.  Saka is basically running a “whatever” Harrel and the Democratic Party establishment workshops say I say campaign. Tavel had been much more active in the West Seattle community over the years and has liberal position statements but is pro business and very popular with the chamber of commerce so could hardly be considered a commie. 

      • WS Neighbor. July 31, 2023 (4:35 pm)

        Totally agree!  Tavel would be good for District 1. 

      • Danimal July 31, 2023 (5:18 pm)

        Those are exactly the reasons I’m voting for Phil. I don’t falsely label ultra-liberals “communists,” but to be sure, he is a good mix of liberal idealism and pragmatic realism with a focus on OUR district, District 1, which is sorely needed. His pro-business focus is also not some bogeyman, as many want to make it out to be – it’s a promotion of our community and its history and its continued vibrancy as a highly desirable neighborhood, with diverse business and community. Hard to see how that’s a bad thing.

  • WSCurmudgeon July 31, 2023 (2:30 pm)

    The largest portion of eligible voters belongs to the “Doesn’t Vote [Often] Party.”  This may be the year “Goodspaceguy” gets into the General Election!  If you’re new here, here’s his  Wikipedia Page:https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Goodspaceguy

    • Anne July 31, 2023 (3:17 pm)

      While I do support his “ pro-choice” stance -this right here-from his page is just one reason why he will NEVER get my vote.


      Goodspaceguy’s political positions generally revolve around his support for space exploration and space colonization.[2] Goodspaceguy also calls for population control through a birth fee. He describes himself as “pro-choice on almost everything.”[24] Goodspaceguy opposes the Washington state minimum wage as it “destroys jobs”.[12][5]

      I want someone whose main focus is what’s wrong down here on earth-& who has a specific agenda for correcting those things. 


      • 1994 July 31, 2023 (9:51 pm)

        Maybe goodspaceguy needs to update his name to goodspaceguyX and go work for Elon. 

      • wsres July 31, 2023 (10:44 pm)

        Anne, I think it is disturbing in a funny way that you entertained a possible vote for him at all. 

  • Delridge Dude July 31, 2023 (3:18 pm)

    Vote for Phil Tavel!

    • Rhonda July 31, 2023 (11:23 pm)

      My whole family already voted for Tavel.

  • Summer July 31, 2023 (3:59 pm)

    August is THE WORST time to hold an election. People are enjoying the PNW in all it’s summer glory. 

    • Admyrl Byrd July 31, 2023 (6:03 pm)

      Which makes it the best time to put a levy increase on the ballot.  They’re not dumb.

    • Question Authority July 31, 2023 (6:28 pm)

      There are weeks available to vote, let alone the absentee ballot option.  Just because your out and about is no valid excuse.

  • KT July 31, 2023 (4:32 pm)

    Everyone is my household votes in every single election…the low turn out makes our votes even more powerful.  Saddens us that in the “greatest country in the world” people can’t be bothered to take 10 minutes to vote. 

    • ttt July 31, 2023 (10:47 pm)

      I agree wholeheartedly. The city council positions and Seattle Public Schools board position are very important to our community and I wish EVERYONE would care enough about our community and schools to vote on these positions.

  • Sue H July 31, 2023 (5:05 pm)

    I know turnout is generally small for some of these elections, but can we wait until the mailing deadline is past to start shaming people for not voting? My ballot doesn’t need to be mailed/put into a drop box until tomorrow.  I’ll be passing the KC Elections drop box in Renton tomorrow morning and plan on dropping it off. It’s not late and I’m not shirking my responsibilities as a voter just because I didn’t mail it 10 seconds after the ballot arrived. Chill out, people.

    • hj July 31, 2023 (6:06 pm)

      Yep. Dropped my ballot off this afternoon and saw plenty of others doing the same thing. Mail-in voting is supposed to make things easier, not induce artificial anxiety.

  • K July 31, 2023 (6:42 pm)

    Wish we had once a year voting. Then we can see the whole picture and all the decisions at once. Everyone has complained about the city council for years and here is their chance to change that. I just hate to see a missed opportunity in all parties. 

  • B July 31, 2023 (7:01 pm)

    Don’t forget that Teresa  Mosqueda is running for king county council position 8.  As a current seattle city council memeber, she is at the forefront of the demonize-and-defund the police movement.  She also recently voted as a city council memeber to reject public drug use legislation in the city.  Her style of leadership is a big part of why the streets of seattle are dangerous.  Please vote to stop her naive and pollyanna philosophies from spreading further to the king county council.  Thank You

    • Reed July 31, 2023 (8:25 pm)

      She will win by a landslide because most people in Seattle don’t think like you. 

      • WSB July 31, 2023 (9:26 pm)

        Please note, County Council District 8 is not entirely within Seattle. It includes White Center and other parts of unincorporated North Highline, Burien, and Vashon/Maury Islands.

      • Ws resident July 31, 2023 (10:39 pm)

        Myself and my family agree with “B” and a big Hell no to Teresa Mosquedo.  Just voted tonight and dropping off our ballots tomorrow!  Hopeful for a fresh city council soon…and that Seattle makes some major changes so we don’t end up like lawless San Francisco and tons of businesses leaving.

    • Orb July 31, 2023 (10:00 pm)

      Agreed. She is a terrible person to have on the council — and I am pretty damn liberal. 

    • vote July 31, 2023 (10:49 pm)

      who is the better candidate?

  • jissy July 31, 2023 (10:24 pm)

    I have a P.O. Box at Westwood — there are 2 tables in the lobby where most of us sort our mail and I cannot tell you how many ballots I saw in the recycle/trashnext to them… it was VERY disheartening!!

    • Foop August 1, 2023 (6:31 am)

      I find your implication that the post office is throwing ballots away to be far-fetched. If you’re concerned about your vote counting, remember you can always check: https://info.kingcounty.gov/kcelections/vote/myvoterinfo/ballottracker

      • Sue H August 2, 2023 (1:03 am)

        Where was it insinuated that the post office was disposing of them? I read that as people received their post office box mail and then immediately recycled their ballots because they weren’t interested.

  • SLJ August 1, 2023 (8:35 am)

    If you don’t vote, you should stop complaining about our city. Washington has the easiest system for voting so there’s really no excuse for missing it. If you don’t care enough to vote, please stop whining about how things are.

  • WestSeattleBadTakes August 1, 2023 (11:01 am)

    Up to 20%, will we hit 30%!?

    Vote Costa!

  • DD August 1, 2023 (2:45 pm)

    I think Jissy’s comment was about people who received their ballots and  tossed them without opening, etc.  Not  about PO handling issues.  I treasure every opportunity to vote, even if it is getting challenging to make a choice in some cases.  No matter your viewpoint, your vote does count. And as they are totaled up, there can be an opportunity to affect public policy decisions.  

Sorry, comment time is over.