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Trail Mix: Bold election predictions, and Washington's quiet primary

click to enlarge Republican Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers made it through the Washington primary to set up a November rematch with Joe Pakootas.
  • Republican Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers made it through the Washington primary to set up a November rematch with Joe Pakootas.


The presidential race between HILLARY CLINTON and DONALD TRUMP continues to baffle the politically savvy and slow alike. Last September, for instance, statistical journalist Nate Silver predicted that Trump had a 5 percent chance of winning the GOP nomination. As long as we're guessing, Politico found seven other predictors. Here are three:

• How deep are candidates' voices? A 2015 experiment by a University of Miami professor concluded that Americans are more likely to vote for the male candidate with a deeper voice. However, in races with a female candidate, higher-pitched vocals tended to prevail. Score one for Clinton.

• Did the Lakers play in the Finals? According to Politico, Republicans won the White House in every election since 1960 (except for 2008) when the Los Angeles Lakers played in the NBA Finals. This year, the Lakers finished dead last in the Western Conference. Clinton again.

• Where are the Olympics? In every election (except for 1988) since 1968, if the summer Olympic Games are hosted by a city that already has hosted an Olympics, the incumbent party wins. Rio de Janeiro has never hosted before. Advantage Trump. (MITCH RYALS)


Washington voters spoke last week (or at a fraction of them did). About a third of voters statewide and in Spokane County voted in last week's primary election, which advanced the top two vote-getters to the general election.

In the 6th District race to replace retiring state Rep. Kevin Parker, R-Spokane, Democrat LYNNETTE VEHRS and Republican MIKE VOLZ beat out three other candidates with 43 percent and 29 percent of the vote, respectively. Notably, Ian Field, a 26-year-old former congressional operative, finished third, despite a fundraising advantage and the backing of much of Spokane's Republican establishment, including embattled Mayor David Condon.

Former Spokane City Councilwoman Nancy McLaughlin unexpectedly lost her bid to retain her seat on the Spokane County Board of Commissioners. Despite McLaughlin being selected earlier this year by the Spokane County GOP to fill the commission's vacated seat, Republican legislative aide JOSH KERNS attacked her record and finished with 32 percent of the vote. In November, he'll face City Councilwoman CANDACE MUMM, a Democrat who finished with 39 percent of the vote.

CATHY McMORRIS RODGERS, who represents Eastern Washington in the U.S. House of Representatives, finished with 42 percent of the 5th Congressional District vote and just 40 percent of the vote in Spokane County, her worst showing since she first ran in 2004. Democrat JOE PAKOOTAS was second in the race with 32 percent of the vote, beating out independent Dave Wilson. (JAKE THOMAS)

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