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Posts published in “Day: February 16, 2014”

In the WA 4th


There will be a change in Washington's congressional delegation next year. But it may not be a very great change.

All 10 of the state's House seats are up for election this year, but little alteration is expected in most of them. There's some discussion that the 1st district, which in theory is fairly closely balanced between the parties, might be competitive this year; but its 2012 Democratic winner, Suzan DelBene, seems well positioned to hold on to it as matters stand. (And no major opposition has surfaced, either.) Pretty much everywhere else, the incumbents are raising a good deal of money and drawing not a lot by way of strong opposition.

The exception to that came last week when veteran Republican Representative Richard “Doc” Hastings said he would retire, after 20 years in Congress. He cited personal and family considerations as important in the decision, and in his case that sounds about right; he was not appearing to face any political difficulties this year, as he has not ever since his second re-election.

The next question would be whether the seat is up for grabs in a partisan way, and there too you have to figure there'll likely be little change.

The Secretary of State's office helpfully broke out some numbers for the 4th district from the 2012 election, and they showed what most politically-minded people knew: This central Washington district, anchored by Yakima and the Tri-Cities, is a conservative and Republican place. In the 4th, Mitt Romney won by about 22 percentage points (about 143,000 votes to about 91,000). In the close governor's race won statewide by Democrat Jay Inslee, he lost the 4th (which in 1002 had elected him to the U.S. House) by about 87,000 votes to 149,000. Democratic Senator Maria Cantwell easily romped statewide, but lost the 4th. The 4th opposed same-sex marriage by nearly a 2-1 margin, and opposed marijuana legalization (though by a smaller margin) too.

The state legislative delegation in the area is just about all Republican.

A bunch of Republicans were quick to indicate interest in running for Hastings' seat after his announcement, but no new Democrats. That's not hard to understand.

On the front pages


Here’s what public affairs news made the front page of newspapers in the Northwest today, excluding local crime, features and sports stories. (Newspaper names contracted with location)

Nampa school levy planned (Boise Statesman)
Eighth and Main building opens (Boise Statesman, Nampa Press Tribune)
Boise's Bieter plans new economic approach (Boise Statesman)
Rules on cattle disease (Lewiston Tribune)
Phillips seeks return to Bonner commission (Sandpoint Bee)
Looking toward low water (TF Times News)

Fred Meyer and the civic stadium (Eugene Register Guard)
Merkley at Klamath town hall (KF Herald & News)
Cover Oregon insurance activity (KF Herald & News)
Man deals with medical marijuana, pills (Medford Tribune)
Minimum wage in Oregon, and Idaho (Portland Oregonian)
Cover Oregon security leaks said fixed (Salem Statesman Journal)
New downtown Salem parking rules (Salem Statesman Journal)

Veteran home funds at risk (Kennewick Herald)
Rising property taxes at Cowlitz (Longview News)
Chinook run expected to be large (Longview News)
Single-serve coffee pods catching on (Seattle Times)
State files suit over bridge costs (Tacoma News Tribune)
Freeholders still mulling Clark government shape (Vancouver Columbian)
EFSEC board reviewing Vancouver oil terminal (Vancouver Columbian)
WA legislators richer, older than population (Yakima Herald Republic)