The editorial board has made recommendations for voters in select federal, state, and King and Snohomish county races. The board also is making recommendations on some local measures and all statewide initiatives appearing on the Nov. 6 general-election ballot. Each candidate endorsement will explain our thinking, but generally we look for moderates with a commitment to work across party lines.
In her column, Seattle Times editorial page editor Kate Riley explains the process.
View all the editorial board’s endorsements for the 2018 general election below. Check back for more endorsements.
Strengths: As the ranking Democrat on the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, Cantwell has consistently opposed efforts to expand drilling and mining on public lands, including in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. This year, the three-term incumbent also helped secure more money for fighting forest fires, coupled with reforms aimed at boosting wildfire prevention.
Derek Kilmer for Congress, 6th Congressional District
Strengths: In recent years Kilmer has worked to overcome the polarization in Congress. He co-chairs the Bipartisan Working Group of Democrats and Republicans who meet weekly for breakfast when in Washington, D.C. to find common ground.
Pramila Jayapal for Congress, 7th Congressional District
Strengths: Jayapal also has channeled her progressive passion toward more productive efforts, like when she rushed to Sea-Tac Airport to respond to the chaos prompted by President Trump’s travel ban early in 2017.
Yes: For decades, Washington has had the most restrictive law in the country when it comes to holding police officers criminally liable for unjustified uses of deadly force. Voters should change that by passing Initiative 940.
No: Washington should coordinate its response with other states, to prevent cross-border job losses. It should also seek a national carbon tax. I-1631 could set that back, because it’s so porous, lacking accountability and larded with special-interest payouts.
No: I-1634 aims to prevent local governments from enacting new taxes on soda and sugary drinks, which experts say increase the risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease and obesity. Voters should reject I-1634 so that local governments can continue to decide for themselves how to best address these health issues in their communities.
Strengths: While this board is concerned that Gonzalez may not be a strong advocate for public records, especially in a pending case in which the Legislature is seeking special treatment to be less transparent than other public agencies, he is nevertheless a high-performing justice deserving voters’ support.
Strengths: Her campaign material highlights that she authored the court’s 2017 opinion that a Richland florist violated state anti-discrimination law by refusing to arrange flowers for a gay couple’s wedding.
Derek Stanford for Legislative District 1, House Position 1
Strengths: Stanford runs a small data-science consulting business, and that data-driven approach undergirds his approach to state policy with an eye on the long term, whether it’s how to approach homelessness or the next steps on education reform.
Shelley Kloba for Legislative District 1, House Position 2
Strengths: The former Kirkland City Council member brings an informed perspective of state government effects on local government and understands the importance of resolving Interstate 405’s remaining challenges in the district.
Chad Magendanz, Legislative District 5, House Position 1
Strengths: Magendanz has deep knowledge of Washington’s education system and has been successful at working across the aisle to build coalitions. His ideas about the next steps in education reform, including directing more money toward special education, nurses and school counselors, are right on target.
Strom Peterson, Legislative District 21, House Position 1
Strengths: During his most recent term, Peterson worked hard to pass a bill creating a drug take-back system for unused medications, including opioid painkillers that can play a role in suicides and overdoses. Doing more to address the opioid crisis is one of his top priorities going forward.
Mike Pellicciotti, Legislative District 30, House Position 1
Strengths: The former King County deputy prosecutor has sponsored bills to cut down on dark money in politics, as well as limit how quickly certain state employees (including legislators) can start working as lobbyists after they exit state service.
Kristine Reeves, Legislative District 30, House Position 2
Strengths: Reeves is a thoughtful lawmaker who dives deep into the specifics of complicated policy. She understands the need to maintain the auditing and accountability requirements the Legislature recently attached to K-12 spending.
Drew Stokesbary, Legislative District 31, House Position 1
Strengths: Stokesbary is skeptical of new taxes but will vote for ones he thinks substantially benefit his constituents. Going forward, he is focused on increasing money for special education. Yet he is equally focused on maintaining strict accountability and auditing requirements when it comes to K-12 spending.
Cindy Ryu, Legislative District 32, House Position 1
Strengths: Ryu is a member of House committees on the capital budget and community development, housing and tribal affairs. She is an active and visible member of the community, and her campaign is an opportunity for voters to discuss any concerns about taxation and spending.
Lauren Davis for Legislative District 32, House Position 2
Strengths: She was founding executive director of Washington Recovery Alliance, a nonprofit that has pressed for sentencing reforms and increased recovery services, and she also has worked on school suicide-prevention programs, after working at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
Mia Gregerson, Legislative District 33, House Position 2
Strengths: Gregerson has advocated for some good policies, including the state’s Voting Rights Act. Yet she seems lost when talking about education policy, despite school-funding issues having occupied a significant amount of the Legislature’s time in recent years.
Gael Tarleton, Legislative District 36, House Position 2
Strengths: A former Port of Seattle commissioner and Pentagon intelligence analyst specializing in port security, Tarleton is a strong, pragmatic advocate for the maritime industry concentrated in her district.
Rebecca Saldaña, State Senate, Legislative District 37
Strengths: Although she has been an advocate for worker rights, Saldaña shouldn’t be a guaranteed yes vote for every labor initiative. She has the brains and political savvy to take a more nuanced approach on both taxes and worker rights.
Nicole Macri, Legislative District 43, House Position 1
Strengths: With her front-line experience supporting people who are currently or recently homeless, Macri could be especially helpful advocating for improved coordination between the numerous entities involved in addressing the region’s homeless crisis.
John Lovick, Legislative District 44, House Position 1
Strengths: A retired Washington State Patrol trooper, his focus has always been on public safety. Lovick served in the state House from 1998 to 2007. He served as Snohomish County sheriff from 2007 and was Snohomish County executive from 2013 to 2015. In 2016, he returned to the Legislature, where his colleagues again ensconced him in leadership as speaker pro tem.
Mark Harmsworth, Legislative District 44, House Position 2
Strengths: He advocates for fiscal responsibility and would fight to make sure the state Legislature doesn’t upend its work on state education finance reform by relenting to districts’ likely request to lift new caps on local levies.
Manka Dhingra, State Senate, Legislative District 45
Strengths: The Redmond Democrat’s experience as a county prosecutor and work on mental-health issues are assets as the Legislature continues work to solve the state’s response to its mental-health crisis at a state hospital and in communities.
Roger Goodman, Legislative District 45, House Position 1
Strengths: As House public safety chairman, Goodman, D-Kirkland, has focused on improving life for Washington’s citizens by holding drunken-drivers accountable, protecting foster kids and domestic violence victims and trying to stop human trafficking.
Larry Springer, Legislative District 45, House Position 2
Strengths: His legislative style is pragmatic and solution-seeking. A member of his caucus leadership, he has pushed toward compromises in a number of areas, including charter schools, tax policy and water-use rules.
Gerry Pollet, Legislative District 46, House Position 1
Strengths: Unlike many of his colleagues, Pollet has a deep understanding of how the state’s Public Records Act works, how it’s the will of the people and how it already exempts truly sensitive information from disclosure.
Strengths: Fain has been a leader on education policy, built a bipartisan coalition to enact a strong family and medical leave law, helped extend financial aid to immigrant students no matter their legal status, protected state food assistance for families with young children and was a leader in framing the last state transportation budget.
Amy Walen, Legislative District 48, House Position 2
Strengths: A Kirkland City Council member since 2009 and mayor since 2014, she has more than government service to recommend her. Walen has more than 20 years experience as a business executive at auto dealerships in Kirkland and Seattle, supporting the local economy with family-wage jobs.
Strengths: Satterberg’s work includes helping launch the Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion (LEAD) program, which aims to keep people arrested for low-level drug and prostitution offenses out of jail. The program avoids filing charges against these nonviolent offenders, instead connecting them to services such as treatment and counseling.
The Seattle Times editorial board members are editorial page editor Kate Riley, Frank A. Blethen, Luis Carrasco, Alex Fryer, Jennifer Hemmingsen, Mark Higgins, Derrick Nunnally and William K. Blethen (emeritus).