Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Local Politics

Now it's the Democrat's turn.

A few weeks back the State GOP held a nominating convention with the intention of firming up their King County Council candidates in the face of the upcoming "top two" primary. The idea was to get one "official" candidate that would run as an (R), guarenteeing a Republican on the final ballot. Things did not work out as planned in the 9th District, which pitted establishment favorite Reagan Dunn against down-county minister Steve Hammond. Hammond won, and Dunn has yet to dismantle his campaign, and may still run, to the consternation of those seeking party unity.

And now the Dems have their own convention, with some similar results. Their Hammond-Dunn moments happened not down in this neighborhood, but rather up in the refurbished 1st District (Northwestern county, including Shorelinel), where two incumbents were pitched against each other. Carolyn Edmonds and Bob Ferguson both were on the council, Edmonds being the establishment favorite. Ferguson, on the other hand, supported the idea of the smaller council, and was outspoken in his crticism of the King County Elections Board. The plan was for Edmonds to take Ferguson out of the equation.

So of course, much like Hammond, Ferguson mobilized his ground game and beat the establishment favorite. Edmonds may choose to stay in the race (though she wisely avoided providing any Dunn-sized soundbites). And so the Dems in the 1st have the same problem that the Reps in the 9th have - the loser won't just stay down.

In the 9th (my district), the Dems went for Roger Larson of Bellevue. That made me wince a little, only because that's not going to play as well down in my rural territories. And the 9th is going to be the "swing seat" in that it includes big chunks of rural and urban landscapes. I don't know a lot about Larson (a quick Google turned up a couple letters to the editor and picture of him looking very stern at a ballot), but as I find out more, I will pass it along.

And speaking of of rural, the Dems came out of this process without even nominations for two of the more rural seats, the 3rd and the 6th. These areas tend to swing red, but even so not getting candidates on the bill is a failure of the the party. I mean, if you're going to go to all the trouble of hosting a convention to push your establishment candidates, the least you should do is get your establishment candidates lined up for all the slots. On the other hand, readers looking for a gig in the 3rd (Redmond and points east) and the 6th (Mercer, Kirkland, Bellevue) - here's a job opportunity just waiting to happen.

And, oh yeah, Christine Gregoire is still governor.

More later,