Remember to vote by August 4!

Your ballot for this year’s August 4 primary election should have arrived and if you haven’t already filled it out and dropped it off at the Ballard Library drop box, then you better tear open that envelope, review your voter’s pamphlet, grab your pen and get going, cause time is running out!

Washington state had a disappointing 31% voter turnout in last year’s primary election, which is actually higher than the national average, but is that really something to be proud of? We can do better! Primary elections aren’t exciting, because you’re not directly voting anyone into office, you’re just helping decide who the top two candidates will be on the ballot for the November election. But, do you really want such a small number of voters making those decisions for you? We didn’t think so!

We’re not going to tell you who to vote for, but here’s some information about this primary election, in particular, the District 6 City Council election, that may help you better understand the significance of your vote in this election.


This year, voting for Seattle City Council positions will be by district, a result of a measure Seattle voters passed in 2013. In this primary and the general election in November, voters will elect seven out of nine councilmembers by district. The remaining two positions (8 and 9) will be elected “at large” (citywide).

If you live in East Ballard, then you’ll be voting for a councilmember to represent you in District 6, which covers Green Lake, Phinney Ridge, Greenwood, Ballard and Fremont. That’s a lot of neighborhoods with very different interests and needs! There are 4 candidates running to represent you in District 6 (3 of them live in Ballard). The top 2 vote-getters will appear on your November ballot:

City of Seattle Council Position No 6 Primary Candidates
Stan Shaufler (no campaign website)
Mike O’Brien
Jon Lisbin
Catherine Weatbrook

If you want to learn more about these candidates than what’s provided in the voter’s pamphlet or on their campaign websites, check out the Seattle Channel’s Video Voter’s guide for District 6 where you can view statements from the candidates. If you want to learn more (which you should), view the candidate forum that took place at the Phinney Neighboorhood Center on June 6. The forum will give you a really good idea on the issues that are important to your candidates and should help you decide who’s going to best represent what’s important to you when their in office.

Although this article focuses on the District 6 City Council primary elections, you will also be voting for the District 8 and 9 at-large positions, Director of Elections, and Commissioner Positions 2 and 5. Check out the Seattle Channel’s online voter guide for more information about these candidates where you can view individual statements and watch recorded forums for the at-large City Council and Port of Seattle races.

So, what are you waiting for? Get out there and make difference. Vote today (or at least by August 4!)