Political Buzz

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Category: Congress & Federal Government


Washington politicians who wanted to join Obama administration should have endorsed Hillary Clinton in 2008

Or so it seems.

Leading up to Washington’s presidential primary in 2008, Hillary Clinton was making a hard push for endorsements from the state’s leading politicians. That was considered the safe move as Barack Obama, though leading, was still the underdog for the Democratic nomination.

Winning these big-name endorsements had more than nominal effect. Most were also super delegates to the Democratic National Convention.

At the time it was considered pretty brave to stand up with Obama instead of Clinton. But that’s what Washington Gov. Chris Gregoire did at a Feb. 8 rally in a packed Key Arena. Also on

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U.S. Rep. Heck opens new 10th district office in Lacey

U.S. Rep. Denny Heck was sworn into office earlier today in Washington, D.C., and his new congressional web site became active. Heck also announced he opened his 10th district office on the third floor of Lacey City Hall.

Heck put out a news release that said the office, open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, is available to meet with constituents. Roel van der Lugt, who had worked for U.S. Rep. Adam Smith, was named Heck’s district director.

Heck, a Democrat, beat Pierce County Councilman Dick Muri, a Republican, in November’s

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Murray seeks to lead Senate Budget Committee, step down as chairwoman of Veterans Affairs

Sen. Patty Murray plans to leave her bully pulpit as chairwoman of the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee and seek a greater role shaping federal spending as the leader of the Senate Budget Committee.

We’re planning to speak with Murray later today. She intends to remain on Veterans Affairs, a committee that she used to draw attention to long waits for patient services in the VA and to push for improved behavioral health services in the active-duty military.

She told Politico she wants to leverage her new role on Budget Committee to shape discussions about investing in the country’s

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Denny Heck hires two staffers for congressional office with ties to Rep. Dicks

Congressman-elect Denny Heck announced today he is naming Hart Edmonson, his campaign manager in this year’s hugely successful 10th district campaign, as his chief of staff to run his Washington, D.C., office. He also is naming Jami Burgess, a staffer from retiring U.S. Rep. Norm Dicks’ 6th district office, as his deputy chief of staff.

Heck, an Olympia politician-turned-entrepreneuer, defeated Republican Dick Muri on Tuesday by a 39,116 votes (as of this morning), or 58.4 percent of ballots cast.

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Democrat Denny Heck has big lead in New 10th Congressional District

Democrat Denny Heck grabbed an early lead against Republican Dick Muri in Washington’s new 10th Congressional District and then he expanded it.

Initial returns on Election Night put Heck up 58.43 percent to Muri’s 41.57 percent. The 10th District, stretching from Olympia to Puyallup, was created after redistricting based on the 2010 Census, which gave Washington another congressional seat.

Heck claimed victory in a dimly lit ballroom at the Red Lion Hotel in Olympia with state Rep. Chris Reykdal and other Olympia area politicos in attendance. His speech reiterated campaign themes to enthusiastic cheers – touching on local issues, Joint

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Michael Baumgartner ad criticizes Maria Cantwell for supporting Afghan War. Also blames “cowardice from both parties in D.C.”

It remains a low-budget campaign, especially compared to his opponent, but Michael Baumgartner’s U.S. Senate campaign has produced an add called “Afghanistan” that lays out his opposition to the war and his criticism for those in government who haven’t ended it.

The ad targets U.S Sen. Maria Cantwell, the Democratic incumbent, for voting in favor of the war and for subsequent funding resolutions. But it also takes on “cowardice from both parties in D.C.”

“Cantwell Can’t Do It,” the ad claims. “Michael Baumgartner Will.”

Campaign spokeswoman Jami Herring said the ad will run on cable in “targeted markets throughout the

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Nation’s top housing official praises advocates at Tacoma conference

The nation’s top housing official praised Washington state Wednesday as a model for the nation, in a keynote address that was both a pep rally for affordable housing advocates and a reflection of the national presidential campaign.

Federal Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan spent most of his speech listing the accomplishments of housing advocates during the recession, including help for renters affected by foreclosure and homeless veterans. He said 3,600 families in Washington state have benefited so far from the state’s portion of the $25 billion national mortgage settlement. And he reminded the audience there are many reasons

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Did an “embarrassed” Maria Cantwell tell U.S. Senate debate audience that she wouldn’t work across political aisle? Nope.

Campaign fundraising appeals have even-lower truth standards that campaign advertising. So it usually isn’t worth our time to try to fact check them. The audience, after all, is usually the already decided voter who might write a check (or another check).

But when the appeal uses language that not only claims accuracy but puts words in the opponent’s mouth, it makes it worth a look.

Like over the weekend when Republican U.S. Senate candidate Michael Bumgartner spun the results of what might be his only debate with incumbent U.S. Sen. Maria Cantwell.

“Cantwell Embarrassed by Baumgartner Debate Victory,” read the

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