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State Democratic Chairman Dwight Pelz says he’ll likely be looking for a new gubernatorial nominee in 2012; thinks Chris Gregoire won’t run

Post by Peter Callaghan / The News Tribune on Jan. 31, 2011 at 1:24 pm |
January 31, 2011 5:02 pm

It is certainly the most-common speculation. But Chris Gregoire hasn’t said one way or another whether she will seek a third term in 2012.

But shortly after winning a third, two-year term as chairman of the Washington State Democratic Central Committee on Saturday, Dwight Pelz told News Tribune reporter Debbie Cafazzo he doesn’t think Gregoire will be his candidate in two years.

Dwight Pelz

Asked about what’s ahead for him and the party, Pelz looked forward to 2012, when he and other party members will be campaigning for candidates for president, governor and the U.S. Senate.

“We will probably be electing a new governor,” he said.

The most-mentioned Democratic replacement is U.S. Rep. Jay Inslee who ran unsuccessfully in the 1996 Democratic primary. But a wide-open race would certainly attract a wide-open field.

A few weeks back, in his first look at 2012 races, University of Virginia political science professor Larry Sabato considered Gregoire a non-candidate.

Only one governor in state history has won three consecutive terms. That was Dan Evans who served from 1965 to 1977.

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