Jul 13, 2022 - Politics

What to know about the Aug. 2 primary election in Washington

Illustration of a pattern of checkmarks, some blue, some red.
Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

It's once again time for the primary election — you know, the one that comes while you're busy trying to enjoy the single month of Seattle summer.

The latest: Ballots are being sent in the mail this week to all registered voters in Washington.

What's happening: King County voters are being asked to weigh in on four U.S. House seats, including the competitive race for the 8th Congressional District, east of Seattle.

  • U.S. Sen. Patty Murray is also up for re-election and faces 17 challengers.
  • Plus, there's a crowded race to decide who will oversee Washington's elections, with eight candidates competing for the office of secretary of state.
  • All state House seats and half of state Senate seats are up for election, too. That includes more than 40 legislative seats in King County.

What's next: The Aug. 2 primary will whittle the pool of candidates in each race down to two.

  • The top two vote-getters in each race will advance to the Nov. 8 general election, regardless of their party affiliation.
  • Washington doesn't have party registration, so you don't need to pick a party to vote.

Yes, but: You must be registered to vote to receive a ballot in the mail.

  • You can register online or by mail through July 25. (The same deadline applies to updating your voter registration address online).
  • Additionally, you can register to vote or update your address in person through Election Day at your county elections office.

You can return your ballot using the U.S. Postal Service, although ballots must be postmarked no later than Aug. 2 to be counted.

  • No stamps are required.
  • You also can return your ballot to a drop box through 8pm on Aug. 2, or vote in-person at a county voting center.

To learn about the candidates, you can explore the King County Elections website.

  • Or, log in at VoteWA.gov to access your personalized voter guide.

Of note: If you need to request a new ballot, you can contact your county elections office.

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