Jenny Durkan, a former U.S. Attorney, announces her candidacy for Seattle Mayor in Seattle. Tuesday, Aug. 1, 2017. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, File)
SEATTLE (AP)-Early returns in Seattle’s primary election show former U.S. Attorney Jenny Durkan leading in a crowded race to replace Seattle Mayor Ed Murray.
Seattle voters were narrowing the field of 21 mayoral candidates down to two who will campaign against each other until a November election. Durkan had captured 31.6 percent of votes tallied by Tuesday evening.
Urban planner Cary Moon and attorney Nikkita Oliver were vying for second place with 15.6 and 13.9, respectively.
Former state Rep. Jessyn Farrell had 11.8 percent, state Sen. Bob Hasegawa was following with 8.6 percent and former Mayor Mike McGinn with 7.2.
Incumbent Mayor Ed Murray in May dropped his re-election bid following sex abuse allegations.
Ballots will be counted for the next several days. Seattle voters will winnow a field of 21 mayoral candidates down to two on Tuesday when they start the process of picking a new leader for the booming city that’s adding thousands of highly-paid workers lured by tech companies like Amazon.
The city is also confronting fears that the poor and middle class are being driven out by skyrocketing housing costs and a tax system favoring the wealthy.
Voters in the open primary will select the two candidates who will campaign against each other until a November election to replace incumbent Ed Murray. He dropped his re-election bid following sex abuse allegations.
Murray was sued by a man who claimed the mayor paid him for sex as a teenager in the 1980s. Murray denied the allegations. The lawsuit was dropped.