Pierce County Executive Pat McCarthy is headed for a decisive re-election to her second four-year term, based on early returns from the general election that ended Tuesday.
McCarthy, with 63.8 percent of the votes counted so far, is comfortably ahead of her challenger, Bruce Minker, the head of one the county’s labor groups. McCarthy had 96,415 votes in her favor to 54,118 for Minker.
McCarthy, who received more than 60 percent of the votes in the primary election in August in a warmup for the general election,.has held elected office for the county for nearly 10 years, starting as county auditor in 2003. She’s been the executive since 2008.
Minker, a jail officer for 30 years, is president of Pierce County Corrections Deputy Guild. The first-time candidate for elected office ran a campaign that was heavy on anti-tax sentiment, including a promise to oppose any proposals for tax increases.
McCarthy emphasized in her campaign that the county budget has been stabilized through reductions in the size of county government and better efficiency in county services. She also cited her regional leadership in transportation and support of the aerospace industry in Pierce County, as well as improvements of the county parks system. About the latter, she pointed out the opening of Ashford County Park and the restoration of the ice rink at Sprinker Recreation Center.