A highly contested House race in the 19th Legislative District had the Democratic Party pouring hundreds of thousands of dollars into challenger Erin Frasier’s campaign as she sought to unseat incumbent Republican Jim Walsh.
According to the State Public Disclosure Commission, the agency that keeps tabs on campaign contributions and expenditures, as of the week before the election Frasier had raised a little more than $356,200, and spent nearly $345,000 on campaign activities such as signs, mailers and radio and newspaper advertisements. By comparison, two years ago, Democrat Teresa Purcell spent a little more than $250,000 in her unsuccessful bid against Walsh, who was running for his first term.
Various arms of the Democratic Party have contributed $233,442-plus in cash and in-kind donations to Frasier’s campaign, the largest a $75,000 cash donation from the Washington Senate Democratic Campaign, an organization established in 2013 to support election and re-election of Democrats to the state Senate.
Walsh’s campaign claims cash and in-kind contributions from the Republican Party of just more than $74,000, the largest a cash contribution of $50,000 from the House Republican Organizational Committee.
District 19 representative Position 2
Far less money flowed into the Position 2 race, which most believed incumbent Democrat Brian Blake had well in hand after a solid showing in the primary.
According to the Public Disclosure Commission, Blake has taken in a little more than $140,000, the largest an in-kind contribution from the House Democratic Campaign Committee of $8,750. Donations of $2,000 came from a number of sources, including the Muckleshoot Indian Tribe, the Washington Beverage Association, Ash Grove Cement Company of Overland, Kan., Green Diamond Resource Company, Anheuser-Busch, the American Chemistry Council and the Washington Forest Protection Association.
Blake’s opponent, Republican Joel McEntire, raised only a little more than $11,000; $5,000 of that came from the House Republican Organization Committee and $1,000 each from the Cowlitz County Republican Women’s Club and Cowlitz County Republicans. The rest are mostly individual contributions of $200 or less.
24th District representative
Less money was funneled into the 24th District representative races. In the Position 1 contest, incumbent Democrat Mike Chapman has raised a little more than $116,000; his Republican opponent Jodi Wilke just more than $42,000.
Timber companies such as Rayonier, Green Diamond and Weyerhaeuser, the Washington Hospital PAC, the Public School Employees of Washington and the Northwest Marine Trade Association count among Chapman’s $2,000 contributors.
Wilke’s major contributions include $3,500 from the Clallam County Republican Party, and $2,500 each from the Jefferson County Republican Central Committee and the House Republican Organizational Committee.
In Position 2, incumbent Democrat Steve Tharinger has raised a little over $123,000. His Republican challenger Jim McEntire has raised just less than $50,000.
The Northwest Sportfishing Industry PAC, Puget Sound Pilots, Green Diamond, Rayonier, several Indian tribes, medical groups and labor organizations are among Tharinger’s top contributors.
McEntire’s major contributors include $10,000 from the House Republican Organizational Committee; $3,500 from Clallam County Republicans; $2,000 from John Quigg, president of Quigg Bros. Construction; and $1,500 from the Washington Association of Realtors.
Grays Harbor County Clerk
Democrat Kym Foster nearly doubled the contributions taken in by her opponent Janice Louthan (who lists no party preference), $8,000 and change to a little more than $4,500 for Louthan.
Foster’s major contributions include $1,000 from the State Council of County and City Employees, and smaller contributions from Jill Warne Real Estate Services in Elma, the Grays Harbor Democratic Committee and Montesano attorney and mayor Vini Samuel.
Louthan has self-funded much of her campaign, with a dozen or so individuals contributing $100 or less.
Superior Court, Position 3
Current Superior Court Judge Ray Kahler tripled the contributions collected by challenger David Mistachkin, just under $36,500 for Kahler to a little more than $11,000. Kahler contributed the majority of funds to his campaign, with contributions of $2,000 from the Hoquiam law firm Stritmatter Kessler Whelan Koehler Moore; $1,000 from PFAU Cochran Vertetis Amala, a law firm with offices in Seattle and Tacoma; and $100 from the Laborers International Union of North America Local 252.
All but about $1,500 of Mistachkin’s campaign was self-financed.
Neither Republican Joel MacLean or Democrat incumbent Chris Thomas recorded any contributions large enough to require filing reports with the Public Disclosure Commission.