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Election picture clearer, but its no done deal

and MARTIN FORBES, STAFF REPORTERS

Lynn Peterson is still leading a close three-person race for the Clackamas County Commission but about 3,000 ballots have yet to be counted, enough to tip Peterson's lead.

Election totals Wednesday showed Peterson, a Democratic city councilor from Lake Oswego, beating out incumbent Republican Larry Sowa for the commission post by just 1,151 votes.

Peterson has led the race by a small margin since election tallies began pouring in Nov. 7. Her early lead over Sowa has narrowed by several thousand votes.

Now, with approximately 3,000 ballots outstanding in the count, Sowa may still close the gap held by Peterson all week.

Clackamas County officials said Wednesday they have counted all but 1,455 ballots approved in the election but have accepted an additional 1,500 ballots after first rejecting them for signature problems. A final gap of 250 votes or fewer would prompt a recount in this race.

Neither Sowa nor Peterson could be reached for comment because both had left the area for vacations.

Peterson, a transportation and land use consultant, leveraged planning issues in the campaign to win supporters. Sowa, a veterinarian and eight-year veteran of the county commission, offered strategies for economic growth and plans for road upgrades.

Independent candidate David Dodds has so far taken six percent of the vote.

Overall, almost 67 percent of Clackamas County voters turned in ballots for the Nov. 7 General Election. That compares to an almost-68 percent voter turnout statewide.

And while the vote has not yet been certified, it is clear who the leading candidates are and how the various ballot measures are doing.

Here's a rundown of local candidates/measures as of Tuesday afternoon with numbers provided through either the Clackamas County Elections Division or the Oregon Secretary of State's Elections Office:

Oregon Governor

Ted Kulongoski, 676,028 votes;

Ron Saxton, 572,547 votes

Lake Oswego City Council

Top three elected

Roger Hennagin, 7,803 votes;

Donna Jordan, 7,265 votes;

Kristin Johnson, 6,500 votes

J.T. Tenneson, 6,176 votes

Douglas Reiter, 4,261 votes

Clackamas County Commissioner

Lynn Peterson has a 1,151-vote lead over incumbent Larry Sowa (62,696 to 61,545 votes); former West Linn Mayor David Dodds pulled 7,843 votes.

Congressional 5th District

Darlene Hooley, 141,202 votes;

Mike Erickson, 111,507 votes

State Senate, 19th District

Richard Devlin, 29,883 votes;

David Newell, 17,582 votes

State Rep., 37th District

Scott Bruun, 11,945 votes;

Bev Backa, 10,012 votes

State Rep., 38th District

Greg Macpherson, 17,836 votes; Fred Bremner, 8,099 votes

Rivergrove City Council

Top three elected

Hafez Daraee, 92 votes;

Shea Gumusoglu, 84 votes;

Write-ins, 40 votes

Clackamas County Public Safety Operating Local Option Tax

Yes: 71,663 votes;

No: 63,571 votes

Metro land measure

Approved

State Ballot Measure No. 39

Real property

Passed

State Ballot Measure No. 40

Judges

Failed

State Ballot Measure No. 41

Exemptions

Failed

State Ballot Measure No. 42

Insurance credit scores

Failed

State Ballot Measure No. 43

Abortion consent

Failed

State Ballot Measure No. 44

Prescription drugs

Passed

State Ballot Measure No. 45

Term limits

Failed

State Ballot Measure No. 46

Election contributions

Failed

State Ballot Measure No. 47

Campaign finance

Passed

State Ballot Measure No. 48

Spending limit

Failed

To check out updated election information online, try the following Web sites:

n www.localnewsdaily.com

n www.lakeoswegoreview.com

n www.co.clackamas.or.us/elections/results/votes.htm

n www.sos.state.or.us/elections/

According to a spokeswoman for the Oregon Secretary of State Elections Division Wednesday morning, the results of all balloting in last week's General Election remain unofficial until the results are certified Nov. 27.