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Several big races were decided after a second round of election returns were released Wednesday, including the Legislative District 45 race, which determined the balance of power in the state Senate. Democrat Manka Dhingra held a sizeable lead over Republican Jinyoung Lee Englund.
Others will still play out over the next several days.
Tacoma and Everett's mayoral races were both close Wednesday. Just seven votes separated Everett candidates Judy Tuohy and Cassie Franklin, and about 1,000 votes separated Tacoma candidates Victoria Woodards and Jim Merritt.
Related: Live election results
Jenny Durkan won the race for Seattle mayor Tuesday in one of the most competitive mayoral races in recent Seattle political history.
The history-making race also produced the city’s first female mayor in 91 years.
Durkan held a big lead over Cary Moon after a second round of returns were released Wednesday, earning 60.39 percent of the vote (72,617 votes). Moon trailed with 39.61 percent (47,633 votes). About 120,000 votes were counted Wednesday afternoon.
“We gotta count every vote,” said Durkan. “But, I also read that there is a message that people are ready for action. They really want some progress made on these things that have been big issues in Seattle, homelessness and affordability and transportation. And, I’m ready to roll up my sleeves and get to work, but it’s going to take everybody at the table to get it done.”
Moon conceded Wednesday, saying in a statement that she offered her congratulations to Durkan.
"To our supporters who may feel disappointed, I feel disappointed too," Moon said. "But I will not let the future of our city be sunk by status quo thinking and politics as usual. There is too much at stake."
Victoria Woodards slightly widened her lead over Jim Merritt after a second round of election returns were released on Wednesday.
Woodards earned 52.32 percent of the vote (12,529 votes), and Merritt garnered 47.18 percent (11,298 votes) with nearly 24,000 votes counted.
Woodards gained an additional 500 votes over Merritt from Tuesday, and about 1,200 votes separate the two candidates.
Cassie Franklin and Judy Tuohy were locked in a near-tie after a second round of election returns were released Wednesday.
Tuohy led Franklin by just seven votes with about 10,800 votes counted.
“We really did think it would be close. After the primary things went back and forth. Both teams did everything they could do in the campaign. This is not a surprise,” said Tuohy (4,804 votes; 44.6 percent).
“The campaign we ran the last few days, and honestly throughout the whole campaign, has been working to get a broader demographic out to the polls. Folks who traditionally have not felt represented in our community. If they turned in their ballots I think we'll do well,” said Franklin (4,797 votes; 44.58 percent).
Early returns show current King County Sheriff John Urquhart trailing challenger Mitzi Johanknecht.
As of Wednesday afternoon, Johanknecht held 53 percent of the vote while Urquhart had 47 percent. About 302,000 votes had been counted Wednesday afternoon.
Johanknecht's margin over Urquhart grew slightly since Tuesday evening.
Urquhart, a 41-year law enforcement veteran, is wrapping up his first term as King County Sheriff. He served for several years previously as the office's public information officer.
Johanknecht has spent 32 years in law enforcement and is a major in the sheriff's office commanding the southwest precinct. Johanknecht campaigned for Urquhart in 2013 but says she did not see the transparency in the department that was promised.
Washington Democrats have won a key state Senate race that puts them back in charge of both legislative chambers for the first time in five years.
After the latest returns were tallied Wednesday, Manka Dhingra, a 43-year-old prosecutor for King County, held a commanding lead over Republican Jinyoung Lee Englund with 55 percent of the vote in the race for the 45th District in Seattle's eastern suburbs.
The political implications in the state and beyond helped the race break legislative spending records in Washington.
With Dhingra's victory, Washington joins Oregon and California with Democratic majorities in both legislative chambers and the governor's office.
Republicans in the state, with the help of a Democrat who caucuses with them, currently control the Senate by a single seat. Democrats hold a slim 50-48 majority in the House.
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