South County Politics: Ballot order turns ABC into GFX for PUD

The ABC alphabet will turn into a GFX alphabet for 2018 ballots. That’s for candidate order for PUD commissioner and other positions contained entirely within Snohomish County, like those in the 21st Legislative District, which includes most of Edmonds, unincorporated areas north of Edmonds and Lynnwood, the city of Mukilteo and part of south Everett.

For such offices, the alphabet is GFXUZONRWMVDQJKTEYHLPCAIBS.

That means that a candidate named Gug would be guaranteed the top spot with a candidate named Sis on the bottom.

Ballot order for positions that cross county lines, like those in the 32nd Legislative District and 2nd Congressional District, is based on the 26-17-16-3-14-4-21-30-23-27-15-2-24- 28-6-10-19-13-9-22-1-29-20-5-7-11-7-25-18 ballot–order draw from the secretary of state’s office. The 32nd Legislative District stretches from Lynnwood to northwest Seattle, the 2nd Congressional District from Brier to San Juan Island.

As a result, the 26th candidate to file for U.S. senator gets the first ballot position.

For the in-county position of PUD commissioner, candidates Chan, Chickering, Mae, Vaughn and Wolfe will appear Wolfe, Mae, Vaughn, Chan, Chickering.

In the multi-county 2nd Congressional District, Democratic incumbent U.S. Rep. Rick Larsen filed first, but his name will appear fifth among the six candidates on the ballot while the third of the six candidates to file gets the first ballot spot because 3 comes before been given 4, 2, 6, 1 and 5.

PUD Commissioner Vaughn gets four challengers

Incumbent Snohomish County PUD Commissioner Kathy Vaughn has four challengers on the August primary ballot.

One is David Chan, a South County Fire and Rescue commissioner. State law would allow Chan to hold both positions as long as at least one is part time.

The second challenger is Kaili Chickering of Lynnwood, a research scientist at the Puget Sound Veterans’ Administration Hospital.

Another is Maggie Mae, chair of the Snohomish County Libertarian Party.

Still another is Rebecca Wolfe of Edmonds, a part-time high-school teacher.

The five candidates are running in the August primary, which will advance two candidates to run in the November general election.

The Snohomish County Public Utility District includes all of Snohomish County plus Camano Island.

PUD commissioner District 2 includes Edmonds, Lynnwood, Mountlake Terrace, Brier, Woodway, Mukilteo and unincorporated areas near those municipalities.

Statements from those running for PUD commissioner will appear in a later column.

By Evan Smith

Evan Smith can be reached at

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