Little visible progress is being made by legislative leaders on a state budget deal at the Capitol. So Democratic Sen. Karen Fraser’s trip to France this week is looking much less awkward. Fraser left town after the regular legislative session ended late last week for Marseille, where she is attending the Sixth Triennial World Water Forum and giving a talk about water issues in the American West.
“If I thought we were going to resolve the budget next week, I wouldn’t go,” Fraser said in an interview Friday, a day before she jumped onto a plane. Fraser is the Senate Democratic Caucus chairwoman who represents the liberal 22nd district in Thurston County.
She had laid the travel plans a while ago – well before it was clear the Senate Republicans would secure three Democrats to approve a coalition budget, which now has the Legislature in a political headlock of its own bipartisan making.
“I’ll be gone the first week,” Fraser said. “I can be back in 24 hours. If they are ready I’ll come back.”
Not that she expects it. Not that anybody does. [This just in: No Senate floor sessions this week; just like the House which earlier ruled out bringing in all the troops.]