Habib, Upthegrove with fast starting campaigns, rack up weekend endorsements

Dave_Upthegrove_Lands_Commissioner

Joel Connelly from the Seattle PI published this article about the endorsements Dave received last weekend in his race for Commissioner of Public Lands. Thank you to the state Labor Council, the King County Young Democrats, and the 37th and 46th Legislative District Democrats for your endorsement. 

 

 

Here's what Joel had to say about Dave's endorsement weekend:

 

Washington is due for down ballot duels in this year's election, as incumbent retirements have opened up no fewer than five statewide offices. The challenge to office seekers -- get attention.

Two candidates, in races for Lieutenant Governor and Commissioner of Public Lands, are coming off highly successful weekends. Both are up-and-coming Democrats, both in intensely competitive contests.

State Sen. Cyrus Habib, an Eastside Democrat running for Lieutenant Governor, captured sole endorsements from the Washington State Labor Council, the King County Young Democrats, and the big, contentious 46th District Democratic organization.

Habib is not alone in labor support. Longtime Olympia State Sen. Karen Fraser is backed by the Washington Federation of State Employees. 

He is blind, but Habib has shown sure footing early in the "Lite Governor" contest. One contender, State Rep. Jim Moeller from Vancouver, switched over last week to run against U.S. Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Wash., in her Southwest Washington district.

A second big weekend winner was King County Councilmember Dave Upthegrove, seeking to succeed retiring State Lands Commissioner Peter Goldmark.

Upthegrove, likewise, scored a political hat trick. He swept up support from the state Labor Council, the King County YD's and the 46th District. The former House Environment Committee chair has also lined up support from more than two dozen legislators.

Upthegrove won another major endorsement from the 37th District Democrats on Monday evening.

He, too, is in a scrap for Democratic support. Ex-Spokane Mayor Mary Verner gained a big name supporter -- former two-term State Lands Commissioner Jennifer Belcher -- as she announced last week.

The Lands Commissioner post is a big job, overseeing 5.8 million acres of state-owned forests, agricultural land and tidelands. The Department of Natural Resources is the state's chief fire fighting agency, at a time when climate change has extended the fire season and brought record forest and fires to Central and North Central Washington.

The down ballot candidates face a daunting task: They must get recognized as public attention focuses on the races for President and Governor.

They must gain that recognition during the summer, a time when Washingtonians traditionally tune out politics. The state was comfortable with its post-Labor Day primary. Now, to give time for military ballots to be sent out and received, the primary has been moved back to the dog days of August.

Hence, fairs and parades and party gatherings assume out sized importance. So do appearances before civic club luncheons where it takes four shakes to get mashed potatoes off the serving spoon.

A Republican candidate for Lieutenant Governor, ex-Bloomberg TV newsman Phillip Yin, made a strongly favorable impression at this month's Mainstream Republicans' conference in Leavenworth.

The GOP hopeful for Lands Commissioner, Steve McLaughlin, has impressed. McLaughlin is a retired Navy commander and former executive officer at Naval Station Everett. Of his entry into politics, McLaughlin wrote on his Facebook page last week:  "This is my first time running for office and the learning curve is steep."

And time is short.

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