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Democrats Could Take Control of State Senate, But Many Votes to Be Counted

Balance of power in WA legislature could change (Getty Images)
Balance of power in WA legislature could change (Getty Images)

There’s still a lot of ballots to be counted, but early indications show the balance of power in WA state might be shifting in the Senate.

One of eight special elections occurring this November is in the 45th District, which is one of a number of small but densely populated areas near Seattle. It runs from Kirkland to Duvall to Sammamish.

Democrat Manka Dhingra is being shown as the early leader after ballots began to be counted. She has a slim lead over GOP candidate Jinyoung Lee Englund with 55 percent of the vote counted.

This special election took place to find a replacement for Republican Andy Hill, who died last year. Whoever wins the race will have to run again in 2018, after fulfilling the rest of Hill’s term.

However, if Dhingra wins, Washington state will join CA and Oregon as states with one-party rule in the House and Senate. For years the state house has been ruled by Democrats, only the GOP-controlled Senate has thwarted many of Gov. Jay Inslee’s controversial proposals, including his ill-fated gas tax plan that would have raised the price at the pump by $1.00 or more.

Dhingra, a 43-year old woman who’s family emigrated to the U.S. when she was a teen, is a Senior Deputy Prosecuting Attorney in King County.

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