By Evan Smith
Democrat Darrell Chapman plans to continue campaigning for a legislative seat from the 21st District despite missing out on appointment to replace fellow Democrat Marko Liias in the State House of Representatives.
The Snohomish County Council appointed Lillian Ortiz-Self to the House seat Jan. 21, three days after 21st District Democratic precinct committee officers at a nominating caucus gave Everett school counselor Ortiz-Self 16 votes to 11 for labor leader Chapman and 1 for Edmonds School Board President Sue Phillips.
Chapman said Tuesday that he would continue to raise campaign funds and to seek endorsements, while watching the performance of 21st District legislators during the rest of the current session. He said that, when he registered as candidate with the State Public Disclosure Commission, he deliberately didn’t specify which position he would seek. That means that he could challenge either Rep. Mary Helen Roberts for Position 1 or Ortiz-Self for Position 2. Candidates file with the County auditor for ballot position in early May.
Whatever he does, Chapman would start the campaign with a big financial advantage. He has $10,584 left from the 2012 campaign, when he intended to run for Position 2 before redistricting spoiled Liias’ plans to run for Congress.
For this year’s campaign, Ortiz-Self has raised $6,425 and Roberts has raised $4,433, but both are prohibited from raising money until after the legislative session, while Chapman can continue his fundraising.
A Chapman run against Ortiz-Self would pit him against an incumbent who would be on the ballot for the first time, while a run against Roberts would pit him against someone running for a sixth full two-year term.
If Chapman runs against Ortiz-Self, the field of announced candidates would include Republican Jeffrey Thorp and Democrat Dick McManus, who has announced for several positions in the past but has been unable to raise the filing fee. Roberts has no announced opponent, nor does Liias have any announced opponents for the district’s senate seat.
The 21st Legislative District includes most of Edmonds, unincorporated areas north of Edmonds and Lynnwood, all of Mukilteo and part of south Everett.