Pierce County Democrats have only themselves to blame for the one-vote leadership revolution in the state Senate.
Democrats failed to elect a Democrat in either the 2nd or 25th Legislative District. Many Tacoma Democrats thought former Sen. Jim Kastama was a Republican, but why was it so hard to elect a traditional Democrat in 2012? Just maybe Kastama was a more effective representative for his rural voters than recognized by Tacoma’s political activists. Now we can see how a real “R” senator looks and votes during the next four years.
In the 2nd, candidate Bruce Lachney was running an effective campaign as internal polls three weeks out had the race at one or two points difference. Then came the JZ Knight hit mailings: not once, not twice, but three times. When this happened, not one leadership Democrat spoke up and got Lachney’s back.
The current leadership crisis has evolved because these previously majority Senate Democrats have failed to listen and respect members elected from rural districts.
Urban Democrats appealed to voters in the 2012 election to be more sensitive and respectful of urban lifestyles. Given the political leadership struggle we will have for the next two years, maybe urban Democrats will invest some time and listening skills to work on their respect for rural voters political perspectives as well.
This would be a win-win for the state of Washington