Douglas County voters favored Court Boice more than other 4th Congressional District voters did. Results from Tuesday’s election show he came in second to Art Robinson here, as he did district-wide, but by a significantly narrower margin.
In that race, and several others, the county’s voters put the same candidates in the lead, but with less enthusiasm than voters outside the county.
The whole 4th Congressional District, which covers Lane and most Southwestern Oregon counties, chose Robinson over Boice by a margin of 45 percent to 24 percent. However, Douglas County voters gave 41 percent to Robinson and 34 percent to Boice. Some of Boice’s better performance here is due to a lower vote for another candidate in the race, Jo Rae Perkins, who received 16 percent here, but 21 percent district-wide.
Boice, a Curry County commissioner, won his home county with 56 percent of the vote. His numbers in Coos County were similar to those here. But he lost decisively in Josephine, Lane and Linn counties.
Boice may have achieved some popularity in Douglas County because he had made timber management and forest fire prevention his primary campaign focus, hitting on issues important to local voters. He also had name familiarity going for him; he is a cousin of Douglas County Commissioner Chris Boice, who won re-election Tuesday.
Douglas County Democrats were somewhat less enthusiastic than other 4th Congressional District primary voters about incumbent Peter DeFazio. The 30-year veteran of Congress from Springfield, defeated Daniel Arcangel 91.5 percent to 7.7 percent overall, but the Douglas County vote was 85.3 percent for DeFazio to 13.4 percent for Arcangel.
Another difference revolves around the race for state House District 2.
Unlike District 2 voters as a whole, Douglas County voters got the Gary Leif vs. Dallas Heard Republican contest right, choosing Leif over Heard, who had dropped out of the race too late to get his name off the ballot.
The confusion in this race was due to a domino effect that started with former senator Jeff Kruse resigning his state senate seat in March.
Heard, formerly the state representative for House District 2, was appointed interim senator to fill Kruse’s seat. And he received the nomination at a Republican convention to run for the Senate seat in November.
All of which meant he didn’t want his House seat any more.
A slim majority of Douglas County voters appear to have followed the issue closely enough to know Leif was really the only candidate who wanted the job. They voted 52 percent to 48 percent in Leif’s favor.
But voters in the small corners of Jackson and Josephine counties in the district threw the vote total off, leading to a near tie in the race, with Heard 13 votes ahead of Leif as of Wednesday morning.
Leif will move forward anyway. Knowing Heard would decline the position, Republican precinct committee persons convened in Roseburg last month and chose Leif as their nominee. He’ll face Democrat Megan Salter in the November general election.
In the race for governor, Douglas County Democrats chose incumbent Gov. Kate Brown over nearest competitor Ed Jones, by a vote of 59.9 percent to 20.8 percent. But statewide, Brown stomped Jones 81.3 to 8.8 percent.
Douglas County Republicans gave Knute Buehler 45.7 percent and Sam Carpenter 33.7 percent. Statewide, Republicans chose Buehler over Carpenter by a slightly higher 47 percent to 29 percent margin.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, Douglas County voters completely disagreed with voters statewide about the Bureau of Labor and Industries commissioner race. Although the race is technically nonpartisan, clear party lines were drawn during the campaign. Republican Tualatin Mayor Lou Ogden outpaced former Democratic legislator Val Hoyle by 46 perent to 36 percent among Douglas County voters. But statewide, Hoyle won the seat outright, garnering a 51 percent majority, compared with 36 percent for Ogden.