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Where are the women candidates?

Post by Cheryl Tucker on May 6, 2012 at 4:33 am with 2 Comments »
May 4, 2012 5:51 pm

Today’s centerpiece article on the opinion page about women candidates, “Don’t get mad, get elected,” got me wondering about the future of this state’s female leadership.

Washington has a woman governor and two women senators. The state Senate has a woman majority leader (Lisa Brown), and the state Legislature is full of women.

But now Brown has announced she’s not seeking re-election, and Gov. Chris Gregoire is stepping down, likely to be replaced by either Rob McKenna or Jay Inslee. If Sen. Marie Cantwell is defeated in November, the state will only have one woman elected statewide (Sen. Patty Murray).

I know, I’m not counting the Supreme Court, which has four female justices. But I kind of put them in an entirely different category from the rough and tumble of politics – although the judiciary is becoming increasingly politicized.

So far the only women I’ve heard of who are seeking statewide elected office are Thurston County Auditor Kim Wyman and former state senator Kathleen Drew, who are both running for secretary of state. Where are the female candidates for governor, lieutenant governor, treasurer, auditor, attorney general, public lands commissioner, insurance commissioner and superintendent of public instruction?

If you know of any, leave a comment and let me know. My admittedly cursory search of our archives hasn’t turned up any more.

Filing week is coming up May 14-18. It would be great to see some women stepping up to run for some of those offices, although if they haven’t made their intentions known and started raising money, they’re probably already out of the loop.

Leave a comment Comments → 2
  1. Freedomforall says:

    Hopefully they are at home taking care of the kids & teaching them what is right or wrong.

  2. LindaMitchell says:

    Thanks for calling attention to the lack of women in statewide office in Washington, Cheryl, but I have to correct you when say that the state legislature is “full of women”. Unfortunately, that’s not the case. Washington led the nation with 40% of the seats in our legislature held by women in the early ’90s (remember the Year of the Woman?), but we have lost the title and that percentage has dropped to only 32%. With the recent announcement by Senator Brown, we now have seven women legislators that have said they are not running for re-election this year.

    There are some impressive women running in 2012, but if we don’t get serious about supporting those women, and encouraging others to run, that percentage will drop again this year.

    Washington has a long history of electing women to office, and 2012 is a great year for women to run. Redistricting, a presidential election, and a large number of voters (and young voters) expected to turnout to vote in the general election has many calling 2012 the 2nd Year of the Woman – but they need our support, and our votes!

    Linda Mitchell
    President, National Women’s Political Caucus of Washington

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