This editorial will appear in Sunday’s print edition.
Since the middle of May – five months ago – the editorial board of The News Tribune has been immersed in homework on the ballots now arriving in mail boxes across the state.
We’ve been studying initiatives and issues, interviewing candidates for the August primary, and interviewing yet more candidates for the Nov. 6 election. Since July, we’ve been publishing our conclusions.
Just to the left is a summary of the endorsements and recommendations we’ve run to date. Here are highlights (or lowlights, if you prefer):
• For governor, we believe state Attorney General Rob McKenna is the better choice. Unlike his Democratic opponent, Jay Inslee, McKenna has made a serious effort to lay out detailed plans to deal with the state’s problems – funding basic education chief among them. He also has substantial administrative experience, which Inslee lacks.
• For the U.S. Senate, we’ve endorsed Maria Cantwell. For the House, we’ve endorsed Derek Kilmer in the 6th Congressional District, Dave Reichert in the 8th, Adam Smith in the 9th and Denny Heck in the 10th.
We’d like to make special mention of Kilmer, a state senator who faces a heavily self-funded opponent, Weyerhaeuser heir Bill Driscoll. Driscoll has much to recommend him, but Kilmer has been an effective and unusually thoughtful lawmaker. He has a profound understanding of job creation and grass-roots economics – expertise that’s desperately needed in Congress. He also possesses a quality that’s too scarce in Washington, D.C.: genuine niceness.
• A yes vote on Referendum 74 would affirm the gay marriage law that cleared the Legislature this year. We see this as a civil rights issue and believe the law reflects Washington’s historic commitment to equality. Its passage could make Washington the first state to enact same-sex marriage by popular vote – a historic milestone.
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