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State politics

Fraud trial against state auditor goes to jury

TACOMA — The five-week fraud trial of Washington State Auditor Troy Kelley drew to a close Wednesday, with prosecutors calling it a "plain case of fraud and a cover-up" and the defense team describing it as a "disaster.""Someone who has...

Date: 04/21/2016 | Local News

At least two Democrats plan to run to replace Moscoso

At least two Democrats have announced plans to run for the position in the State House of Representatives that incumbent Democratic 1st Legislative District State Rep. Luis Moscoso is giving up to run for a position in the State Senate.

Date: 04/18/2016 | South County Politics

3 Republicans vying for lieutenant governor speak in Everett

EVERETT — The most sought-after statewide office in this year's election is lieutenant governor and on Thursday three Republicans who want the job made their case to party loyalists in Everett. Phillip Yin, of Bellevue;

Date: 04/15/2016 | Local News

State senator from Edmonds says she's disappointed with 2016 legislature

Democratic State Sen. Maralyn Chase says that she is disappointed with the performance of the 2016 legislature. 

Date: 04/12/2016 | South County Politics

Seattle feels the Bern

Big rally today highlights the city's affinity for lefty politics

Date: 03/25/2016 | Northwest

Inslee walking a charter school tightrope

Gov. Inslee was hanging out with his pals from the Washington Education Association on Saturday morning when the subject of charter schools came up.Inslee, who had come confident of

Date: 03/24/2016 | The Petri Dish

Legislator: Budget talks could be resolved by end of the week

OLYMPIA — Washington lawmakers, in their second week of an overtime special session, continue working toward a supplemental budget deal but have not yet reached an agreement.Republican Sen. Andy Hill, one of the negotiators, said Tuesday that "significant...

Date: 03/23/2016 | Northwest

Polarized Legislature continues budget negotiations

OLYMPIA — As lawmakers prepared to enter the second full week of supplemental budget negotiations in an overtime special session Friday, the political gridlock of Congress has felt closer to home for some who follow politics in Washington.Though lawmakers don't have to...

Date: 03/19/2016 | Local News

Give the West its due by rotating the primaries

There's a not-insignificant part of the United States known as the West Coast. It includes such prominent states as California, Oregon and Washington.These states have yet to hold a single presidential primary or caucus. But at 8 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time on Tuesday, this...

Date: 03/17/2016 | Opinion Columnists

The Cappys are back

We award lawmakers for their amazing achievements

Date: 03/13/2016 | Local News

Sharing in the pain of state budget inaction

For many of us, childhood paddlings were preceded by a parent's assurance that "this is going to hurt me more than it does you."We weren't always convinced, but there may be some actual shared pain in Gov. Jay Inslee's decision to make good on his threat to veto...

Date: 03/13/2016 | Editorials

The governor's strategy of quiescence

Little Marko was on fire.

Date: 03/09/2016 | The Petri Dish

Lieutenant governor expected to say he won't seek re-election

Lieutenant Gov. Brad Owen plans a midday statement Tuesday on his political future. Most figure the punch line will be that he’s not going to run again.

Date: 03/08/2016 | The Petri Dish

Lawmakers turn to ‘big issues’ as end of regular session looms

OLYMPIA — There are deals to make and votes to take as state lawmakers race to wrap up this week.With the 60-day session set to end Thursday, the House and Senate are still seeking agreement on how to pay for last year's wildfires, shore up staffing at state...

Date: 03/07/2016 | Local News

The fixer

Pat McClain, city of Everett’s man behind the curtain, retires

Date: 03/06/2016 | Local News

It’s a popular job: 8 aspire to be lieutenant governor

So far eight candidates, including four state lawmakers, are in the race or, in the case of one person, about to enter.That's not counting

Date: 03/02/2016 | The Petri Dish

More women needed in office

Since 2014, Snohomish County has earned the dubious honor of having the worst turnout of voters in Washington state. Sadly, this isn't limited just to Snohomish County. Some of our state's most populous counties also shoulder shame. King, Pierce and Yakima finished in the bottom five...

Date: 02/28/2016 | Commentary

What you need to know to take part in caucuses and primaries

This is a presidential election year so the election process is different than during other years. Prior to the Nov. 8, 2016, general election, Washington voters can participate in the party caucuses, the Presidential Preference Primary election and the general primary election. The...

Date: 02/20/2016 | Commentary

Governor assails state Senate for firing transportation chief

OLYMPIA — An angry Democratic Gov. Jay Inslee on Monday blasted Republican senators for ousting Transportation Secretary Lynn Peterson, calling it a “scurrilous, underhanded and dishonest” political campaign of which they should be ashamed.

Date: 02/08/2016 | Local News

Inslee to discuss Senate actions on cabinet appointees

Democratic Gov. Jay Inslee will address the ousting of one cabinet member and the resigning of another at a news conference Monday morning.

Date: 02/08/2016 | The Petri Dish

Politics behind attacks on state's Clean Energy Fund

Washington state's Clean Energy Fund shows that this corner of the nation is committed to developing the energy technologies needed by 21st-century industry. The state Legislature wisely voted last session to renew this critical initiative.But the fund is not without fierce...

Date: 02/07/2016 | Commentary

Candidates for lieutenant governor meet at Friday forum in Lynnwood

The three announced candidates for Washington lieutenant governor will meet in a forum at the Lynnwood Convention Center Friday at 6:30 p.m.

Date: 01/28/2016 | South County Politics

Judge rules Eyman’s tax-cut ballot measure unconstitutional

SEATTLE — A judge struck down Tim Eyman’s latest tax-limiting measure Thursday, finding among other problems that it was a thinly disguised effort to propose a constitutional amendment — which can’t be done by initiative in Washington.

Date: 01/21/2016 | Local News

Koster says he'll seek a 39th District state House seat

John Koster is done thinking about running for a seat in the Legislature.He's doing it.Wednesday morning the Arlington Republican with a long political resume

Date: 01/20/2016 | The Petri Dish

Kagi bill to limit children's access to firearms gets Thursday hearing

State Rep. Ruth Kagi’s bill to limit children’s access to firearms will have a hearing Thursday before a legislative committee in Olympia.

Date: 01/20/2016 | South County Politics

Dorn frustrated with lack of progress on education

Minutes before Gov. Jay Inslee gave his State of the State address Tuesday, the leader of Washington's public school system delivered a message of his own.Superintendent of Public Instruction Randy Dorn...

Date: 01/14/2016 | The Petri Dish

Legislators tackling ‘a lot of little stuff’ during quick 60-day session

OLYMPIA — A new legislative session gets under way Monday with public school funding poised to again garner much of state lawmakers' attention.But it won't be the only flashpoint.Anger...

Date: 01/10/2016 | Local News

How to contact your state lawmakers in Olympia

The 2016 session of Washington's Legislature begins on Monday in Olympia. It is scheduled to last 60 days, after which many of the 147 lawmakers will hit the trail to campaign for re-election or another office. Here's the complete list of state lawmakers in the seven districts of...

Date: 01/10/2016 | Local News

Big Issues | 2016: Transportation

Light rail, congestion top list of challenges

Date: 01/05/2016 | Local News

Democratic U.S. Rep. Jim McDermott won’t seek a 15th term

SEATTLE — Longtime Democratic Rep. Jim McDermott of Washington state announced Monday that he will not seek re-election for a 15th time when he completes his term at the end of the year.

Date: 01/04/2016 | Local News

Big Issues | 2016: Governance

Snohomish County's new exec faces policy, personnel challenges

Date: 01/03/2016 | Local News

State charges Reardon, ex-aide

Agency cites repeated violations of laws during campaign

Date: 12/17/2015 | Local News

Back from Paris, Inslee aims to tackle carbon pollution

Nothing like a few days away from the office to get one’s spirit rejuvenated and energy recharged.For Gov. Jay Inslee, it came in a trip to Paris, where he attended the international confab on climate change.

Date: 12/10/2015 | The Petri Dish

Voting Rights Act would enshrine the diversity people seek

With the Nov. 3 General Election, Washington state acknowledged the emergence of a more diverse political reality. The election of eight Latinas to five City Councils (five in Eastern Washington and three in the Seattle Metro area) has clearly demonstrated that the Latino community is...

Date: 12/03/2015 | Commentary

Ryu to lead committee on community development, housing, tribal affairs

Democratic State Rep. Cindy Ryu has become chairwoman of the House Community Development, Housing and Tribal Affairs Committee, which also oversees efforts to help veterans and boost tourism in Washington state.

Date: 11/27/2015 | South County Politics

Local legislators say Eyman wrong about deal to repeal initiatives

Local legislators say that initiative sponsor Tim Eyman was wrong when he said recently that legislative Democrats had planned to ask Republicans to join them in voting to repeal one voter-approved initiative in exchange for Democrats’ joining Republicans in voting to repeal...

Date: 11/23/2015 | South County Politics

Younger, moderate recruits bolster Republican ranks

There's never been a figure in Washington politics quite like Frank Chopp.Since 2002, the Seattle Democrat has served as speaker of the House of Representatives, a 13-year reign that stands as the...

Date: 11/19/2015 | The Petri Dish

A poor grade on governance

With a D-plus circled in red, it's not a report card that will go up on the fridge, but it's one that ought to be read closely by representatives of all three branches of state government: executive, legislative and judicial.After ranking third among the 50 states in the...

Date: 11/19/2015 | Editorials

Keep process out in the open

A recent decision by the state Supreme Court could now provide some cover for public officials looking to conceal the more controversial parts of the sausage making they do as members of city and county councils, school boards, fire district...

Date: 11/06/2015 | Editorials

‘Absolutely elated’ Eyman celebrates initiative’s success

Voters have spoken and no one could be pleased more by what they said than Tim Eyman.

Date: 11/05/2015 | The Petri Dish

I-1366 would result in a mess

To put it simply, voters should reject Initiative 1366.Initiative promoter Tim Eyman, in his quest to require that the Legislature submit to a two-thirds majority in both houses for tax...

Date: 10/18/2015 | Editorials

As they have for 22 years, voters should back tax limits

This year's Initiative 1366 should look familiar: Voters have had a 22-year track record of overwhelmingly approving initiatives that make it tougher for Olympia to raise your taxes.Regardless of your political leanings — whether you are a Republican, Democrat or...

Date: 10/18/2015 | Commentary

U.S. Rep. Dave Reichert stays out of governor’s race

Republican U.S. Rep. Dave Reichert announced Friday what many political insiders had presumed: He’s staying in Congress and won’t challenge Democratic Gov. Jay Inslee in 2016.

Date: 10/16/2015 | Local News

Eyman's I-1366 would force Legislature’s hand — or cut sales tax

OLYMPIA — Tim Eyman's latest ballot offering will gauge how far voters are willing to go to restrict state lawmakers' ability to raise taxes.If it passes Nov. 3,

Date: 10/11/2015 | Local News

Tim Eyman stays mum on state's investigation of his compensation

EVERETT — It isn't easy to keep loquacious initiative promoter Tim Eyman from talking except when the conversation turns toward allegations he broke several campaign laws. Eyman, a Mukilteo...

Date: 10/11/2015 | Local News

Public Disclosure Commission calls Eyman's violations serious

OLYMPIA — When the five citizens empowered to enforce Washington's campaign finance laws reviewed allegations against Tim Eyman, they concluded his behavior in 2012 was so egregious they could never punish him as much as they might like or he might deserve.So they...

Date: 10/04/2015 | Local News

Get ready for November vote

Three minutes and you're done.That's the message the Secretary of State's office has sent out to 218,000 potential voters in Washington who appear eligible to vote but haven't registered yet, including 21,077 in Snohomish County and another 2,338 in Island County.

Date: 10/01/2015 | Editorials

PDC asks attorney general to pursue possible violations against Eyman

OLYMPIA — The state Public Disclosure Commission on Thursday asked the attorney general to act against initiative salesman Tim Eyman for secretly moving hundreds of thousands of dollars in donations among two...

Date: 09/24/2015 | Local News

They’re talking McCleary again, but that won’t be enough

Fines are mounting against the state for not having a plan to ensure public schools are adequately funded.

Date: 09/24/2015 | The Petri Dish

Tim Eyman misused funds, state disclosure agency says

OLYMPIA — Initiative promoter Tim Eyman secretly moved money among two ballot measure campaigns in 2012 and pocketed tens of thousands of dollars in the process, according to findings of a three-year state investigation released Monday.

Date: 09/22/2015 | Local News

Move up presidential primary

We're still more than a year away from the 2016 general election and the vote for our next president, yet already we've had two Republican debates. So, yes, the presidential campaign season is too long.For contrast, consider the campaign for the Canadian federal election now...

Date: 09/20/2015 | Editorials

State Democrats eager to know who’s taking on Inslee

The decision of state Sen. Andy Hill to not take on Gov. Jay Inslee in 2016 forced the Democratic Party attack machine to brake hard and return to the shop.

Date: 09/17/2015 | The Petri Dish

Republican jumps into race against U.S. Sen. Patty Murray

OLYMPIA — Former Washington state Republican Party Chairman Chris Vance announced Tuesday that he’s running against Democratic incumbent U.S. Sen. Patty Murray, who is seeking a fifth term.

Date: 09/08/2015 | Northwest

State Supreme Court won’t block Eyman anti-tax initiative

OLYMPIA — An initiative that would limit the Legislature's ability to raise taxes will appear on the November ballot, after the Washington Supreme Court on Friday refused to block it, as a lawsuit against the measure had sought.The court said an opinion explaining the...

Date: 09/04/2015 | Northwest

A Snohomish family, not named McCleary, part of school-funding lawsuit

SNOHOMISH — Patty Venema of Snohomish knows what happens when the state fails to pay its share of the costs of educating students.Parents like herself and husband, Tod, are asked to raise money for their children's schools to buy books, computers, new maps to replace...

Date: 08/30/2015 | Local News

High court sanctions state for school-funding ‘violation’

OLYMPIA — Lawmakers learned Thursday that the penalty for not turning in a homework assignment to the state Supreme Court is $100,000 a day.

Date: 08/13/2015 | Local News

High court sanctions state for school-funding failure

OLYMPIA — The Washington Supreme Court on Thursday ordered the state pay $100,000 a day in sanctions, starting immediately, for its lack of progress toward fully paying the cost of basic education.

Date: 08/13/2015 | Northwest

State's top-two primary leaving many without a voice

If you are a Republican wanting to vote in the upcoming general election for Snohomish County offices, don't bother. There are no Republican candidates for whom to vote. That is the sad outcome of an initiative that the voters in our state approved in 2004. With this initiative, the...

Date: 08/12/2015 | Opinion Columnists

Move up presidential primary

You may yet get your opportunity to help nominate Donald Trump or any other candidate among the Republicans and Democrats running for president in 2016.Earlier this spring it appeared the state would skip a presidential primary, instead allowing the state parties to use the...

Date: 08/03/2015 | Editorials

A divided Legislature adjourns after 176 days of bickering

OLYMPIA — At long last, it’s over.The 2015 legislative session came to an uneventful end Friday, a record-setting 176 days after it began.

Date: 07/10/2015 | Local News

Secretary of state wants to hold earlier presidential primary

OLYMPIA — Washington intends to conduct a presidential primary in 2016, though it is not certain when.Republican Secretary of State Kim Wyman wants to hold it in early March rather than late May,...

Date: 07/09/2015 | Local News

Saluting the red, white and brew: ‘The Field Guide to Drinking in America’

Niki Ganong wants to help travelers drink better. In “The Field Guide to Drinking in America: A Traveler’s Handbook to State Liquor Laws,” the Portland, Oregon-based author talks up a seemingly dull topic: liquor laws.

Date: 07/04/2015 | Hops & Sips

Lots of loose ends as legislative overtime continues in Olympia

OLYMPIA – State lawmakers scuffled over high school testing reform into Wednesday morning and the fight is having ripple effects on a fresh new budget and long-sought transportation package.The Senate is at the center of the political wrangling. Democrats want to vote...

Date: 07/01/2015 | Local News

3rd special session begins with transportation agreement

OLYMPIA — House and Senate transportation leaders said Sunday that they have finalized details of a $15 billion transportation revenue package that includes an incremental increase in the gas tax.

Date: 06/28/2015 | Northwest

Inslee, lawmakers claim there's a budget deal but won't elaborate

OLYMPIA — State lawmakers concluded a second special session Saturday as their leaders claimed they had reached agreement on a new two-year budget.But House...

Date: 06/27/2015 | Local News

Washingtonians react

The same-sex marriage ruling resonates here

Date: 06/26/2015 | Local News

Republicans propose 1-month budget as emergency option

OLYMPIA — In order to avoid a third special session — and a potential partial government shutdown next week — lawmakers are trying to reach agreement and pass a two-year state budget before the current session ends Saturday night.

Date: 06/25/2015 | Northwest

Capital building kerfuffle adds to state budget woes

To lease or to own, that is the question.It’s vexed state lawmakers for months as they consider moving the Washington State Patrol into new digs.

Date: 06/25/2015 | Local News

Is a state budget deal imminent? Apparently not

OLYMPIA — It didn’t take long Friday for a bubble of optimism about a budget deal to be burst, stoking concern about a possible partial government shutdown in 10 days.

Date: 06/19/2015 | Local News

New taxes appear to be off table in state budget talks

OLYMPIA — Gov. Jay Inslee said Friday that closing some tax exemptions should be the compromise that the House and Senate consider in order to reach a budget agreement quickly and avoid a partial government shutdown in Washington state.

Date: 06/19/2015 | Northwest

Lawmakers should lift the cone of silence over budget

If silence is golden, a lot of wealth is stockpiled in the state Capitol, where lawmakers and the governor are mum on progress in reaching a deal on a new state budget.

Date: 06/18/2015 | Local News

Chase, other state senators argue against high-stakes testing

Democratic State Sen. Maralyn Chase and seven other senators recently argued against high-stakes testing as a requirement for high-school graduation.

Date: 06/15/2015 | South County Politics

Local legislators cautiously optimistic about end to second special session

Some local legislators say that they remain optimistic about an end to the second special legislative session in Olympia. Many, however, say that they won’t know much until leaders finish negotiating.

Date: 06/11/2015 | South County Politics

Koster ‘thinking seriously’ about another run for state House

One of Snohomish County’s best-known Republicans is eyeing a return to politics in the place where his political career began.John Koster, the Arlington dairy farmer and ex-maker of laws for the state and county, is “seriously” thinking about a run for the Legislature in 2016.

Date: 06/11/2015 | Local News

Lawmakers claim $120 daily payments during special sessions

OLYMPIA — The price of state lawmakers' failure to reach a budget deal has eclipsed $180,000 and is still climbing.That's what's been paid to lawmakers in $120-a-day per diem payments and mileage reimbursements for

Date: 06/06/2015 | Local News

Kagi, Ortiz-Self optimistic about quick end to special session

When the state legislature started the first week of its second special session Monday, Democratic State Reps. Ruth Kagi and Lillian Ortiz-Self both agreed with House Appropriations Committee Chairman Ross Hunter that the legislature could finish by the end of the second week in the...

Date: 06/05/2015 | South County Politics

McCleary mandate casts shadow over budget negotiations

There’s nothing quite like the threat of a government shutdown July 1 to infuse urgency into negotiations on a new state budget.

Date: 06/04/2015 | Local News

Chase bill aimed at protecting ratepayer voting becomes law

A bill that State Sen. Maralyn Chase sponsored to require that voters in a water or sewer district get to decide whether a city or town can assume jurisdiction of their district became law in May when Gov. Jay Inslee signed it.

Date: 06/02/2015 | South County Politics

State lawmakers show signs of movement toward budget deal

OLYMPIA — Efforts to reach agreement on a state budget seemed to be creating momentum on Monday as Gov. Jay Inslee met with legislative leaders of both parties and House Democrats rolled out a new plan they called a “substantial compromise.”

Date: 06/01/2015 | Local News

Governor calls 2nd special session as lawmakers squabble

OLYMPIA — A lot was going on, but not much was happening Thursday as state lawmakers concluded a monthlong special session.They passed a few bills and exchanged a few barbs, but House Democrats and Senate Republicans didn’t get a deal done on a new state budget.

Date: 05/28/2015 | Local News

Inslee calls another special session, summons negotiators

OLYMPIA — Gov. Jay Inslee has ordered state lawmakers to convene a second special session and told them to come to his office Friday morning to continue their negotiations over the state’s $38 billion two-year operating budget.

Date: 05/28/2015 | Local News

Tea party favorite Elizabeth Scott first in line to challenge DelBene

One of Snohomish County’s most conservative Republican lawmakers has quietly begun a campaign to unseat Democratic U.S. Rep. Suzan DelBene.

Date: 05/28/2015 | Local News

Local legislators plan telephone town-hall event Tuesday

Legislators from the 21st District plan to talk to constituents in a telephone town-hall event Tuesday.

Date: 05/26/2015 | South County Politics

Budget battle in Olympia could delay Everett WSU building

OLYMPIA — Washington State University's plan to construct a new building in Everett faces delay because of the continuing political...

Date: 05/25/2015 | Local News

There’s no easy fix for funding state’s schools

The way Washington pays for public schools is illegal.

Date: 05/21/2015 | Local News

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