Erik Smith has an interesting interview with Rob McKenna on the Washington State Wire, dissecting the former attorney general’s thoughts on why he lost the gubernatorial race to Democrat Jay Inslee in November. Read it here.
McKenna points to the lack of success all but one Republican had in getting elected statewide in Washington and cites growing partisan polarization and being hurt by the national party’s image problems. Even though he had most newspaper endorsements (including The News Tribune’s) and carried
47 of the state’s 49 a majority of the state’s legislative districts, he couldn’t overcome the overwhelmingly Democratic votes in two Seattle districts, the 36th and 43rd.
I might have missed it in the article (it’s long), but I think one possible reason might have been overlooked: the fact that McKenna was part of the court challenge to the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare). Several people I talked with who usually vote Democratic said they would have voted for McKenna had it not been for that. I don’t know if that made the difference, but it didn’t help.