Hobbs withdraws from crowded race for lieutenant governor

The Lake Stevens state senator cited extended duty with Washington National Guard as a factor.

State Sen. and Washington National Guard Lt. Col. Steve Hobbs during a news conference. (TVW)

State Sen. and Washington National Guard Lt. Col. Steve Hobbs during a news conference. (TVW)

LAKE STEVENS — Democratic state Sen. Steve Hobbs of Lake Stevens ended his bid for lieutenant governor Monday, citing an extension of his assignment with the Washington National Guard overseeing the support of food banks and other tasks in the western portion of the state in response to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Hobbs, a lieutenant colonel in the National Guard, was tapped in April to command Task Force Olympic. He had filed to run for the higher office but withdrew Monday, noting in a statement that his orders had been extended through the summer.

“Like so many people responding to this crisis, my plans have changed,” Hobbs said.

Hobbs was the first Democrat to enter the race after Democratic Lt. Gov. Cyrus Habib announced he would not seek re-election. Hobbs had raised nearly $180,000 and secured endorsements from a former Washington governor, Gary Locke, and the state’s last lieutenant governor, Brad Owen.

Hobbs’ exit leaves 11 people vying to succeed Habib. The top two finishers in the Aug. 4 primary will advance to the Nov. 3 general election.

The list includes two Democrats, state Sen. Marko Liias of Lynnwood and U.S. Rep. Denny Heck of Olympia; and four Republicans, Ann Davison Sattler of Seattle, Marty McClendon of Gig Harbor, Dick Muri of Steilacoom and Joseph Brumbles of Yelm.

Other candidates include Libertarians Jared Frerichs of Spokane and Matt Seymour of Bothell, Democrats James Rafferty of Milton and Michelle Jasmer of Puyallup, and Republican Bill Penor of Lake Stevens.

Jerry Cornfield: 360-352-8623; jcornfield@herald net.com. Twitter: @dospueblos.

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