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Liias and Scott easily outpolled two other opponents in early returns Tuesday for the right to move on. They're vying to represent the 21st District, which includes Mukilteo and Edmonds.
For Liias, there was good news and not-so-good news on election night.
The good news was that Liias, who was appointed to the state House of Representatives in January 2008 and elected the following November, was receiving more votes than all three of his opponents combined.
The bad news was that two years ago Liias won about 60 percent of the votes in the primary election. This time, after the first wave of returns, his total was a little more than 52 percent.
"The national mood is a little bit more pessimistic" than in 2008 because of the economy, he said. "I expected we would be down a little bit."
The beneficiary of that national mood was Scott, who, like, Liias lives in Edmonds.
"I'm very pleased and very thankful and grateful for the support of my neighbors," Scott said. "With two other contenders in the race, I really wasn't sure at all how it would play out."
Scott received 4,585 votes, or 30.4 percent, to 1,862 (12.3 percent) for Republican Alan Tagle and 758 (5 percent) for SeniorSide Party member Mike Huisman. Liias drew 7,843 votes.
Scott, 44, has received support from prominent Republicans including Attorney General Rob McKenna and U.S. Senate candidate Dino Rossi.
"From here to the general, I will continue to listen on the doorsteps (of voters) to find out what their top concerns are," she said. "I have no bone to pick with my opponent, the incumbent, but this is all about being a servant to the people."
Liias, 29, said he was pleased with the returns despite the dip from 2008.
"We have an outright majority and we're going to continue to tell voters the same thing we've been telling them all along. My priorities continue to be balancing the budget, investing in schools and putting people back to work."
Keep up with results
Today's results reflect 87,088 ballots counted in Snohomish County. The county issued 375,946. It will update totals at 5 p.m. today. The election is expected to be certified Sept. 1.
Snohomish County will post results at www.snoco.org/elections. The Secretary of State will update statewide results at www.secstate.wa.gov.