From time to time, we've suggested that Pierce County, because of the relatively close partisan split there and the substantial number of swing voters, is one of the political keys to Washington (much as Washington County is in Oregon).
There's a useful piece on just this today in the Tacoma News Tribune, pointing out how both main gubernatorial candidates have been visiting Pierce with a vengeance:
"In the span of a few days in July, [Democratic Governor Chris] Gregoire launched a Puget Sound boat tour in Tacoma, greeted Washington National Guard soldiers returning from Iraq, addressed teachers at a Tacoma convention and broke ground on a pedestrian overpass at Chambers Creek Properties in University Place. [Republican challenger Dino] Rossi visited the area four times in June, then returned for a Chamber of Commerce luncheon in Puyallup last month. He kicked off August with a Lakewood fundraiser on Friday."