One Step Closer To Finding Deccio's Replacement - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

One Step Closer To Finding Deccio's Replacement

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YAKIMA, Wash. - Yakima County republicans moved one step forward on Tuesday night in their quest to find a replacement for Senator Alex Deccio.

Precinct Committee Officers selected their top three candidates who will move on to the final round.

Joe Walkenhauer, a Yakima businessman, received the least amount of votes. He was eliminated from contention.

Now the three candidates receiving the most votes, in this order, are retiring State Representative Jim Clements, Yakima businessman Curtis King and attorney Al Schweppe.

These three candidates will now be presented in ranking order to county commissioners who will make the final call.

The vote took place a little after seven on Tuesday night at the Trinity Church of Nazarene in Yakima.

And most voters in attendance felt strongly about getting the right candidate to replace Senator Deccio.

"It's very important at the state level because that senator, that state senator will be going to olympia and serving on various committees and voting on legislation and representing the 14th district, yakima valley," PCO voter Jim Keightley said.

If a candidate is appointed before the start of the legislative session, he will have seniority over the other newcomers heading into the senate.

The legislative session starts on Monday. County commissioners will pick a replacement from the three final candidates on Friday.