Super PAC pulls cash out from governor’s race

Why did Our Washington send $360,000 to New Direction PAC instead of supporting Inslee’s race?

A super PAC supporting Democratic Gov. Jay Inslee has redirected hundreds of thousands of dollars from the governor’s race into getting more Democrats elected to the Legislature.

Our Washington spent nearly half of its $1.4 million cache Oct. 13 to air cable television ads attacking Republican Bill Bryant, Inslee’s opponent, in Seattle, Spokane and Yakima.

And the committee — whose largest donors include the Democratic Governors Association, Washington Federation of State Employees and Service Employees International Union — was expected to continue waging an offensive against the GOP candidate right up until Election Day on Nov. 8.

Instead, on Oct. 17, Our Washington sent $360,000 to New Direction PAC which is conducting vigorous campaigns against incumbent Republicans in the House and Senate, and a few GOP hopefuls. New Direction is funded primarily by the political arms of the Democratic caucuses in the House and Senate.

The decision by Our Washington to pull its cash out of the governor’s race pretty clearly indicates its confidence of an Inslee victory and a desire to get him more legislative allies for a second term.

Results of a statewide poll released Oct. 24 seem to validate their confidence. Inslee leads Bryant by 12 percentage points, 51-39, in the survey of 502 likely voters conducted by Seattle pollster Stuart Elway.

New Direction, meanwhile, has amassed $4 million, the most of any independent political committee this election cycle. Those dollars are getting used to help Democrats pick up two seats in the Senate and regain the majority. Money is also getting spent to add seats in the House where Democrats hold a slim 50-48 advantage on Republicans.

For example, New Direction has spent nearly $400,000 against Republican state Sen. Steve O’Ban of University Place and is closing in on $300,000 opposing Sen. Steve Litzow of Mercer Island. Roughly $330,000 has been expended against Rep. Lynda Wilson, R-Vancouver, who is battling Democratic candidate Tim Probst to succeed retiring Republican Sen. Don Benton.

The PAC is also active in a pair of legislative races in Snohomish County.

So far it’s expended roughly $153,000 against Janice Huxford, a Lake Stevens Republican, who is taking on appointed state Rep. John Lovick, D-Mill Creek. And it has spent almost $50,000 to unseat state Rep. Mark Harmsworth, R-Mill Creek who faces the challenge of Democratic hopeful Katrina Ondracek of Lake Stevens.

Inslee too is working to bolster the ranks of Democrats, especially in the Senate.

On Oct. 22, he took part in get-out-the-vote rallies in Bellevue with Lisa Wellman, the Democratic challenger to Litzow, and then in Vancouver with Probst. It wasn’t the first time and not likely to be the last time Inslee campaigns alongside Democrats with a shot of upending Republicans.

“It’s not enough to just get re-elected,” said Jamal Raad, Inslee campaign spokesman. “We need to have a working Senate majority.”

Political reporter Jerry Cornfield’s blog, The Petri Dish, is at www.heraldnet.com. Contact him at 360-352-8623; jcornfield@heraldnet.com and on Twitter at @dospueblos.


Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing editor@rentonreporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.rentonreporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) Please keep letters to 300 words or less.

More in Opinion

Federal Way resident Bob Roegner is a former mayor of Auburn. Contact bjroegner@comcast.net.
Republican’s write-in campaign highlights post-primary intrigue | Roegner

Can former Bothell mayor beat two Democrats for lieutenant governor post?

Federal Way resident Bob Roegner is a former mayor of Auburn. Contact bjroegner@comcast.net.
Race relations and your local police department | Roegner

The jury is our citizens, and they are divided.

Rico Thomas, left, has been a clerk in the Fuel Center/Mini Mart at Safeway in Federal Way for the past 5 years. Kyong Barry, right, has been with Albertsons for 18 years and is a front end supervisor in Auburn. Both are active members of UFCW 21. Courtesy photos
Grocery store workers deserve respect and hazard pay | Guest column

As grocery store workers in King County, we experience the hard, cold… Continue reading

Courtesy photo
Editorial: Make certain you count in 2020 census

The Census Bureau has been told to cut its work short, making your response even more important.

Federal Way resident Bob Roegner is a former mayor of Auburn. Contact bjroegner@comcast.net.
The police department of the future | Roegner

Based on comments from elected officials and police, the Black Lives Matter… Continue reading

Face masks save lives and jobs across Washington

Wearing a mask saves lives and saves jobs. And all across the… Continue reading

Cartoon by Frank Shiers
Editorial: Reopen schools in fall, but do it safely

Don’t bully schools into reopening. Protect our students.

Federal Way resident Bob Roegner is a former mayor of Auburn. Contact bjroegner@comcast.net.
Points of contention on police inquests in King County

Inquests frequently unfold against a backdrop of sadness and drama: Family members’… Continue reading

Cartoon by Frank Shiers
Editorial: Stopping COVID is now up to each of us

With a resurgence threatening, we need to take greater responsibility to keep the virus in check.

Armondo Pavone is the Mayor of Renton.
Renton needs a defined timetable for homeless shelter | Guest editorial

By Armondo Pavone and Ruth Pérez, Special to the Renton Reporter The… Continue reading

Doreen Davis, left in mask, waves at parade participants on May 2. Olivia Sullivan/staff photo
Wear your face-hugging, ever-loving mask | Editorial

“Don’t make me come down there.” — New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo,… Continue reading

Valley police chiefs of King County release unified message in response to death of George Floyd

Police chiefs of Des Moines, Tukwila, Renton, Federal Way, Kent, Auburn, Algona, Pacific, Black Diamond and the Port of Seattle pledge to stand with communities.