Once, just as the idea of Republicans getting elected from within Seattle was an ordinary and normal thing, there were Democrats - usually relatively conservative, but Democrats - getting elected from the parts of rural Washington east of the Cascades. But there hasn't been one of those - the rural Democrats from eastern Washington - in many years now, with one exception. Bill Grant, a Democrat who has representd the Walla Walla and surrounding area for 22 years, has been the last of his kind. (Even back then, he was unusual - the legislative seat he won had been held by Republican Doc Hastings, now a U.S. representative.)
Until now. Grant, diagnosed with lung cancer only last month, died on Sunday at Walla Walla.
There will be the usual laudatory remarks following his passing. I his case, they will generally match with the favorable descriptors he tended to get from around the political sphere. They also match up with this: A person who could get elected as long and convincingly in such strong territory for the opposing party, must have been doing something right all those years.