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Dirksen re-elected to Metro Council seat

Incumbent posts 8-point edge over challenger Gerritt Rosenthal in unofficial returns.


This story has been updated from its original version.

Craig Dirksen.Results from Tuesday's election show Craig Dirksen has won a second four-year term on the Metro Council.

As of Wednesday, unofficial results placed Dirksen ahead of his challenger, Tualatin resident Gerritt Rosenthal, with 53.4 percent of the vote to Rosenthal's 45.7 percent.

Dirksen has represented District 3 since 2012, following a longtime post as the mayor of Tigard.

The district covers Beaverton, Durham, King City, Sherwood, Tigard, and Tualatin and Wilsonville — which straddle Washington and Clackamas counties — as well as several unincorporated communities.

Dirksen is an incumbent, but he has been known to be a critic of Metro at times. He has said that he has not always agreed with Metro transportation funding and land use planning as they affect his district.

But Dirksen, 63, now deputy council president, also specializes in transportation projects and funding as his priorities on the council. He co-chairs the steering committee of the Southwest Corridor Project, a multi-agency plan to improve transportation in the Tigard area and bring a MAX light rail line from Portland to Tualatin.

Rosenthal has lived in Stafford for 25 years, and area that has been the focus of a political tug-of-war between Metro, Clackamas County and its neighboring cities, Tualatin West Linn and Lake Oswego.

“I value the work that Metro does,” Rosenthal said at a recent forum. “I do want to change things because it can do better.”

Rosenthal, 71, was the 2014 Democratic nominee against Rep. Julie Parrish, R-West Linn. He also sought the House District 37 seat in 2004, 2006 and 2010.

Peter Wong and Geoff Pursinger contributed to this report.

Editor's note: This story has been updated with new election results, as well as to account for write-in votes.