Ex-lawmaker and election denier trailing in Snohomish County auditor contest

By: - August 2, 2023 5:29 pm
Robert Sutherland, a candidate for Snohomish County Auditor, is pictured speaking at a gun rights rally in Seattle in 2018.

Robert Sutherland, pictured at a 2018 gun rights rally in Seattle, is running for Snohomish County Auditor. (Photo by Karen Ducey/Getty Images)

A former state lawmaker who fanned false claims of widespread fraud in the 2020 presidential election is losing his bid to oversee elections in Snohomish County.

Republican Robert Sutherland remained third in the contest for Snohomish County auditor following a second day of ballot counting Wednesday.

Incumbent Auditor Garth Fell is leading with 40.7% followed by Cindy Gobel with 32.4% and Sutherland with 26.7%. He trails Gobel by nearly 6,200 votes.

If the results hold, Fell and Gobel will meet in November in a rematch of their 2019 duel for the nonpartisan post. Fell won with 51%. 

Fell and Gobel are both election professionals and reject theories spun by former President Donald Trump and embraced by Sutherland that election-related mischief robbed Trump of a second term.

Sutherland served two terms in the state Legislature before losing his bid for a third term in 2022. He was defeated by another Republican, Sam Low, who also serves on the Snohomish County Council.

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Jerry Cornfield
Jerry Cornfield

Jerry Cornfield joined the Standard after 20 years covering Olympia statehouse news for The Everett Herald. Earlier in his career, he worked for daily and weekly papers in Santa Barbara, California.