You settle down to watch your favorite show and get up feeling like you need to take a shower. The onslaught of political TV ads will likely continue unabated until Tuesday evening as candidates’ campaign, and those for and against them, are trying to wring every last vote out of fans just wanting to watch the World Series.
To hear U.S. Senate candidate Tiffany Smiley tell it, incumbent Sen. Patty Murray is tantamount to a drug kingpin responsible for every crime in the state over the last 30 years and jealously depriving the good people of pumpkin spice lattes at the closed Starbucks on Capitol Hill.
None of that is true, of course. Murray has a history of supporting law enforcement and public safety, as detailed in a story covering the latest debate by Seattle Times reporter David Gutman. And Starbuck’s holiday drinks just dropped at all the rest of its stores on Capitol Hill last week.
Nevertheless, like an earworm of “The Girl from Ipanema,” Smiley’s sound bites echo: “Thirty years and … “
Shake it off, and do your own homework. Resist the spin.
We are happy to share ours with you. Since May, The Seattle Times editorial board has interviewed more than 120 candidates running for federal, state and local office. We’ve vetted their backgrounds and their votes. We are running our summary today. Read the full editorials here.
The one thing I always say about The Seattle Times editorial board endorsements is that we are ideologically unreliable. Candidate quality matters; civic résumé does too; authenticity over ideological sound bites.
Yes, we enthusiastically endorsed Democrat Murray for her sixth term — her service to the entire state, saving veterans clinics, pressuring successive presidential administrations to clean up Hanford and promoting trade is remarkable. Her Republican challenger does not even come close in terms of actual service or credibility.
Smiley, who calls herself “100% anti-abortion” would be dangerous in the Senate. Though she promises not to vote for a federal abortion ban, there’s other damage she could do. If her election helped tilt the body to Republican control, which is possible according to some polls, she would be voting to confirm Supreme Court justices. Possibly, down the road, she could affirm a justice that might expand the 6-3 conservative majority even further.
Predictions that the U.S. House will flip are a little more certain. But let’s not have Washington help.
Our similarly strong endorsement goes for Democratic U.S. Rep. Kim Schrier in the 8th Congressional District, which is often cited as a possible flip for the Republicans. The Sammamish physician has worked hard representing this district that spans the Cascade mountains.
While the editorial board is hoping the Puget Sound’s federal leaders remain the same, the board would like to see a stronger check on the power of Democrats who control the governor’s mansion and the state house.
We’ve grown frustrated with Democratic leaders in both houses sidelining Republicans, who are duly elected and represent huge swaths of the state. Breaking a 40-year tradition, majority Democrats refused to include Republicans in the crafting of the transportation package. Also, more listening likely would have averted the still unfolding problems of the state’s now-suspended long-term care mandate and maybe the Legislature would have used more of its billions in surplus revenues for meaningful tax relief — as even other blue states have done.
In three races, we endorsed Republican challengers to incumbent Democrats — two happen to be former lawmakers themselves. And in two Republican-held seats, we endorsed more moderate, but still conservative, challengers over the far-right incumbents.
In the 45th Legislative District Senate race, we endorsed Ryika Hooshangi, a pro-abortion rights Republican. A former State Department diplomat and attorney, Hooshangi is liberal on social issues and conservative on fiscal issues — good sensibilities for the Eastside district especially with a recession looming. The incumbent, Manka Dhingra, obfuscated in our interview about her well-known role in trying to decriminalize hard drugs and in sinking a reasonable change to the controversial police pursuit law, even though her caucus had the votes.
Because the state’s promise of education equity after the McCleary ruling and the legislative fix remains unmet, the state needs to vigorously review Washington’s school-financing system and reform it further. That’s why we endorsed former state Rep. Chad Magendanz of Issaquah in the 5th Legislative District. He was a key Republican negotiator as lawmakers sought to satisfy the Supreme Court.
In the 44th Legislative District to the north, we endorsed former Republican Rep. Mark Harmsworth of Mill Creek. The business owner had served admirably as the ranking member on the House Transportation Committee.
In the open 47th District Senate seat to the south that was held by a departing Democrat, we endorsed Republican Bill Boyce, a Kent City Council member. Boyce’s community credentials are significant, having also served on the city’s school board.
While we hope a few more Republicans are elected to the state Legislature, clearly some GOP incumbents need to go.
In the 39th Legislative District, state Rep. Bob Sutherland, a notorious election denier, tried to bill state taxpayers to travel to a South Dakota conference hosted by former President Donald Trump’s pal, Mike Lindell of My Pillow fame.
Please vote him out. Thirty-ninth District voters can trade up by electing instead Snohomish County Council member Sam Low of Lake Stevens, known for his ability to work with people throughout the community.
And, in the 31st District, we recommend voters retire far-right Republican Sen. Phil Fortunato. Instead, they should vote for a familiar face, Chris Vance of Sumner, who served the area previously as state representative and on the Metropolitan King County Council. Now running as an independent, Vance is the former state Republican chair who left the party after Trump was elected.
So there you have it. Agree or disagree, please vote.