Grays Harbor County

Grays Harbor County

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The Progressive Voters Guide compiles the information that allows you to make informed decisions about the races on your ballot, based on your values. Vote in every race on your ballot! It's our right and our responsibility. This is a preview version of the guide. We will continue adding recommendations and adding details until ballots are mailed out.

Congress, 6th Congressional District

U.S. Representative

Derek Kilmer photo
Democrat


Rep. Derek Kilmer is running for re-election in the 6th Congressional District. He is a moderate Democrat who is a reliable supporter of creating jobs and improving infrastructure. Kilmer has been a leader on small business development and protecting Puget Sound during his four terms in Congress. A former state Senator, he previously worked as a business consultant and economic development official.

In Congress, Kilmer is a sponsor of a clean Dream Act in support of immigrants who arrived in the country as children with their undocumented parents. He supports common sense gun safety legislation and co-sponsored the Voter Empowerment Act, an online voter registration act that helps keep voting rights equitable. Kilmer has also worked on several environmental bills, including the Wild Olympics Wilderness & Wild and Scenic Rivers Act. This year, he supported coronavirus relief as well as the Paycheck Protection Program and Health Care Enhancement Act.

Kilmer has been a reliable vote in Congress and has earned strong support from progressive advocacy organizations for his re-election. Kilmer is the best choice for the 6th Congressional District.



Other Candidates

Also running in this race are Democrat Rebecca Parson and Republicans Elizabeth Kreiselmaier, Chris Welton, Stephan Brodhead, and Johny Alberg.

Parson is the leading progressive among these challengers. She is a small business owner and former instructor at Johns Hopkins University. She is running on an extremely progressive platform that includes a Green New Deal with 100% renewable energy by 2030, protecting and expanding Social Security, national rent control, universal basic income of $2,000 a month, paid family leave, and Medicare for All. Parson is supported by Brand New Congress and the Washington State Progressive Caucus.

Kreiselmaier believes Democrats have been killing jobs and rewarding "wrong behaviors." Her platform is conservative and includes policies like upholding the Second Amendment and making drug prices affordable through competition and transparency. Welton does not have a strong campaign platform. Brodhead is an aircraft technician who wants to reduce carbon emissions and bring construction jobs to the district. Alberg has worked a variety of jobs including as a logger and agricultural housing maintenance and is not running on a strong campaign platform.

Statewide

Governor

Jay Inslee photo
Democrat


Governor Jay Inslee has been a strong, principled leader on the important challenges facing Washington. Before he was elected as governor in 2012, Inslee represented both sides of the Cascades in Congress, opposed the Iraq war, and worked to increase accountability and oversight for Wall Street banks.

Inslee has established himself as a national leader on fighting climate change. He has invested more than $170 million into clean energy and energy efficiency projects, implemented the Clean Air Rule, and pushed for legislation that reduces pollution in Washington. In his 2020 bid for the presidency, Inslee brought a climate-centered focus to the race. Outside of his work on climate, Inslee has signed into law Washington's public option for health care, paid family leave, and the Equal Pay Opportunity Act.

Recently, Inslee has been a national leader in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic. His proactive, decisive, science-driven efforts have saved countless Washingtonians from getting sick. Unfortunately, we've seen the flip side recently where states with governors who were slow or failed to act have seen dramatic increases in cases.

Inslee is facing 35 opponents this year, the most prominent of which are Republicans Sen. Phil Fortunato, Tim Eyman, and Bothell Mayor Joshua Freed. Fortunato is a social conservative who has abandoned working families while in the office. In past legislative sessions, he voted against protections for LGBTQ school children and against expanding access to reproductive health care for women. Freed believes we should be less cautious about COVID-19 protections and rapidly re-open the state, a faulty strategy in the face of death and difficult recoveries even for previously healthy coronavirus patients.

Eyman is one of the worst candidates for governor the state has ever seen. Eyman's legal problems range from fraudulently diverting funds from his ill-conceived initiatives into his personal bank accounts to wide-ranging campaign finance violations to stealing a chair from Office Depot. He is the face behind many of Washington's most damaging initiatives, including the most recent disaster that has cut tens of billions of dollars from state transportation projects. Eyman has lately been doubling down on his cringeworthy antics by comparing Gov. Inslee's COVID policies to George Floyd's murder.

As the coronavirus crisis continues and the gap in the state budget persists, we need real, experienced leadership at the helm of the state. Inslee is the clear choice for governor.



Lt. Governor

Marko Liias photo
Democrat


State Senate Floor Leader Marko Liias was first elected to the Mukilteo City Council in 2005 before being appointed to the state House in 2007 and finally the state Senate in 2014.

In the Legislature, Liias has been a strong progressive advocate for all families. As the Democratic Senate Floor Leader, Liias has led the fight on LGBTQ equality and created a student loan bill of rights. His past legislation includes a ban on the inhumane practice of conversion therapy. This year, Liias sponsored legislation requiring informed consent to perform a pelvic exam and creating a new state financial aid program for undocumented students.

In his interview with Fuse, Liias said he would use the bully pulpit of the office to connect with voters across the state about progressive issues, including fixing our upside-down tax code. In addition, he laid out a strong set of proposals for how to increase police accountability. If elected, Liias would be the first openly gay statewide official in Washington history.



Denny Heck photo
Democrat


Rep. Denny Heck is retiring from Congress and running for Lt. Governor. Heck has had a long, effective career in both the private and public sectors, most notably as a five-term state representative, House majority leader, chief of staff to former Gov. Booth Gardner, and TVW co-founder.

In Congress, Heck has fought to make college more affordable, worked to lower health care costs, ensure veterans get the benefits they deserve, and create middle-class jobs. He supports immigration policies that create a path to citizenship and worked to help prevent health care premium increases due to Trump's policies. Heck was elected to represent the 10th Congressional District after it was created in 2012 and decided to retire after the impeachment hearings in December 2019.

His top priorities as Lt. Governor would be reforming our regressive tax system, investing in infrastructure to rebuild the economy as well as the roads and bridges, and helping people "skill up". In his Fuse interview, he expressed support for police reform and wants to expand on the Electeds For Justice pledge to eliminate qualified immunity for police officers. In addition, Heck said he wants to use the office and his extensive experience to lobby swing senators on progressive issues.



Other Candidates

This open seat has attracted a large number of candidates, including Democrats James Rafferty and Michelle Jasmer, Libertarians Jared Frerichs and Matt Seymour, and Republicans Ann Davison Sattler, Joseph Brumbles, and Marty McClendon.

Neither Rafferty nor Jasmer has a strong campaign presence. Frerich's top three campaign priorities are reducing economic barriers, reforming red-flag laws, and decriminalizing sex work. Seymour's main focus is preventing any tax increases, but he is also not open to options for progressive revenue. Davison Sattler is an attorney who ran for Seattle City Council as a Democrat against Debora Juarez in 2019 with the support of conservative groups like Safe Seattle. She officially declared herself a Republican early this year. Her platform includes turning unused commercial and civic structures into field hospitals, temporary housing, or disaster relief centers. Davison Sattler is endorsed by Republican elected officials and is not progressive. McClendon ran for Lt. Governor in 2016 and claimed then-Senator Cyrus Habib (who is not running for re-election to this position because he decided to enter the Society of Jesus) was not Christian, but "anti-God."

Secretary of State

Gael Tarleton photo
Democrat


Former port commissioner and progressive state Rep. Gael Tarleton is now running for Secretary of State, who serves as the state's chief elections officer, among other roles. First elected to the Legislature in 2012, Tarleton has been a strong advocate for environmental causes such as Governor Jay Inslee's initiative to reduce carbon pollution. She sponsored bills during her first term in the House to strengthen the maritime industry, improve access to health care, and ensure gender pay equity.

Tarleton is running for Secretary of State to expand access to voting in Washington while safeguarding our elections against attacks "foreign and domestic." She wants to improve digital security and increase funding for county auditors to safeguard local elections from hacking attempts in the wake of the 2016 election. She would also expand audits of the state and local systems to identify any weaknesses that could be exploited.

Tarleton is challenging incumbent Republican Secretary of State Kim Wyman, who has faced a bumpy road during her time in office. Last year, Wyman's office released a new $9.5 million voter registration database that was riddled with errors and led to a backlog of tens of thousands of registrations. King County elections director Julie Wise described the release as "irresponsible" and "not even functioning." In addition, Wyman was slow to support the Washington Voting Rights Act, same-day voter registration, and postage-paid ballots, and she has failed to condemn the president's relentless attacks on voting by mail.

Also in this race are Independent Ed Minger and Progressive Party candidate Gentry Lange. Minger wants to prohibit candidates from running paid ads, which is blatantly unconstitutional, and Lange wants to end voting by mail in Washington, a particularly confounding position during a pandemic.

We need a progressive leader in the Secretary of State's office who is fully committed to protecting our elections and removing every barrier to participation in our democracy. Tarleton is the clear progressive choice in this race.



State Treasurer

Mike Pellicciotti photo


Mike Pellicciotti has served in the Washington state House representing the 30th Legislative District since 2016 and is now running for Treasurer. Pellicciotti has never accepted corporate campaign donations and has led efforts to make the Legislature's records open for public view. He also wrote the Corporate Crime Act, which increases financial penalties for corporate crimes by 100 times, and has successfully supported laws reducing property taxes.

Pellicciotti is challenging incumbent Republican Duane Davidson. In 2016, incumbent Jim McIntire retired, leaving the seat open. Because of the crowded primary, two Republicans made it through to the general election, giving them control of the Treasurer's office for the first time since 1957. Davidson previously served as the Benton County Treasurer from 2003 to 2016. In his term, he has been a traditional Republican and has referred to the state Legislature "raiding" the Rainy Day Fund. He has also only attended 3 of 18 critical pension meetings since fall 2017.

Pellicciotti has been a solid legislator and is the best choice in the race for Washington State Treasurer.



State Auditor

Pat McCarthy photo
Democrat


Washington Auditor Pat McCarthy has been a consistent advocate for government transparency and accountability during her first term in office. Previously, she served as Pierce County Executive and Pierce County Auditor, where she was honored as the 2006 Washington State Auditor of the Year.

Recently, McCarthy announced that her office has opened two independent audits of the Employment Security Department. The first will investigate the delay in unemployment benefits for hundreds of thousands of Washingtonians who lost their jobs during the COVID-19 pandemic. The second audit will look into how criminals stole hundreds of millions of dollars through a sophisticated fraud scheme.

McCarthy is facing a challenge from Democrat Joshua Casey and Republican Chris Leyba. Casey is a CPA who wants to bring his financial expertise to the auditor's office. Leyba is a former police detective who currently runs an animal rescue on his farm. If elected, he would prioritize buying from Washington businesses and saving taxpayer dollars.

McCarthy's experience and commitment to oversight will be valuable as the state works to emerge from the pandemic and the recession. McCarthy is the best choice in this race.



Attorney General

Bob Ferguson photo
Democrat


Attorney General Bob Ferguson's accomplishments during his two terms in office are impressive. From delivering millions of dollars back to consumers who were wronged by fraudulent corporations and his ongoing battle with the federal government to clean up the Hanford nuclear waste site to successfully fighting two Tim Eyman initiatives, Ferguson has been a strong and effective advocate for people in Washington. He has sued the Trump administration 50 times as of October 2019 and won every completed case (22 by his own count). Some of Ferguson's biggest accomplishments from the past few years include protecting consumer medical data, protecting statewide water quality from Trump's erosive environmental policies, and fighting back against the Trump administration's child detention laws.

Ferguson is running against Republicans Brett Rogers, Mike Vaska, and Matt Larkin. Rogers states that with over 20 years of law enforcement experience, including time with the Seattle Police Department, he would be well-suited to research and set criminal justice policy. A member of the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce, Vaska's priorities include reducing regulations for business and streamlining the permitting process. Larkin states that he's running to prioritize "the homeless situation" that "no one is doing anything about," and promises to empower law enforcement while making Washington more business-friendly.

Ferguson is the clear progressive choice for Attorney General of Washington.



Commissioner of Public Lands

Hilary Franz photo
Democrat


Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz has been a proactive force for protecting our communities from climate change. As the head of the Washington Department of Natural Resources, she has focused on wildfire management and climate action.

This year, Franz released a climate resilience plan for rural Washington that includes expanding wind and solar farms and massive reforestation. Given the statewide threat and impact of wildfires with recent record-setting fire seasons, she has also worked on a 20-year forest health plan and a 10-year fire protection plan.

Franz is running against six other candidates: Republicans Cameron Whitney, Steve Sharon, Maryam Abasbarzy, and Sue Kuehl Pederson, Democrat Frank Wallbrown, and Libertarian Kelsey Reyes. Wallbrown and Abasbarzy have no campaign details available. Pederson is the former chair of the Grays Harbor Republican Party and says she's running to bring new leadership to the office and to balance the state's economy and ecology. Reyes works in the restaurant industry and has no concrete campaign details or website available. Finally, Sharon is running to investigate the effects of 5G towers and Whitney is running to follow Trump's suggestion of raking forests to stop forest fires.

Franz has the experience we need to guide and protect our state from increasingly dangerous fire seasons to the rising threat of climate inaction. Vote Franz for Commissioner of Public Lands.



Superintendent of Public Instruction

Chris Reykdal photo
Non-Partisan


Chris Reykdal is running for re-election to the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction to continue his leadership of our state's public schools through this challenging time. Previously, Reykdal spent 14 years serving on local school boards and in leadership positions at community and technical colleges, as well as serving 6 years in the Legislature. In the state House, Reykdal had a strong progressive voting record and was a consistent champion for public schools.

In his first term as Superintendent, Reykdal has pushed the Legislature to fully fund K-12 education, increase teacher pay, and close the opportunity gap for students of color. More recently, Reykdal has worked closely with Gov. Inslee to help Washington's schools navigate the pandemic. He made the tough decision early to close schools for the year to keep kids and families safe and slow the spread of COVID-19. If re-elected, Reykdal will continue to advocate for these priorities and work with schools across the state as they make the transition back to in-person education.

Reykdal is facing a handful of opponents in this non-partisan race: conservative Ron Higgins, former Republican legislative candidate Maia Espinoza, Dennis Wick, Stan Lippman, and David Spring. Espinoza has garnered attention by publishing a false and inflammatory voters pamphlet statement attacking Reykdal. Lippman is a disbarred lawyer and anti-vaccination advocate, Spring doesn't think we should have closed schools during the pandemic, and Higgins wants to inject religious teachings into public education. Wick is a former member of the Snohomish School District Board of Directors who wants to modernize our school system.

Reykdal is the clear choice for Superintendent of Public Instruction.



Insurance Commissioner

Mike Kreidler photo
Democrat


Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler has spent his entire career serving the people of Washington. Prior to running for statewide office, Kreidler was a doctor of optometry, state legislator, and member of Congress.

As Insurance Commissioner, Kreidler has been a consistent advocate for consumers and patients in overseeing insurance companies in Washington. Kreidler set up one of the first and most effective Obamacare exchanges in the country, helping expand access to health care for hundreds of thousands of Washingtonians. More recently, Kreidler moved quickly to issue an emergency order requiring insurance companies to waive copays, coinsurance, and deductibles for COVID-19 testing and office visits. In addition, he forced insurance companies to allow consumers to access other health providers if they did not have an in-network option for testing.

Kreidler is running against Republican Chirayu Avinash Patel and Libertarian Anthony Welti. Patel wants to model the office of the insurance commissioner based on a hybrid of the Ronald Reagan and Thomas Jefferson administrations, though he gives few details on what this would mean. Welti is running on a vaguely anti-corruption platform and wants to allow insurance companies to offer cheaper plans with fewer protections for consumers.

Kreidler has earned your vote for re-election to the Office of the Insurance Commissioner.



Legislative Races

Depending on where you live, you may have one of the below legislative races on your ballot.

19th Legislative District

State Senator

Dean Takko photo
Democrat


Sen. Dean Takko is a moderate Democrat who has represented the 19th District since 2005. He previously served in the state House for 10 years before being appointed in 2015 to the Senate. Takko has supported bills that invest money in jobs and infrastructure but has disappointed progressives on environmental issues and gun safety.

Takko's Republican challengers are Wes Cormier and Jeff Wilson. Cormier is a Grays Harbor County Commissioner who is prioritizing property rights and fiscal responsibility in his campaign. Wilson, who serves as the Vice President for the Port of Longview Commission, promises that he will move forward no additional business or capital gains taxation. Neither Republican has offered a strong policy response to the COVID-19 pandemic that has left hundreds of thousands of Washingtonians out of work and struggling to get by. Rather than investing in communities, both Cormier and Wilson would make knee-jerk cuts to services at the moment they're needed most.

Takko is the best choice in this race.



State Representative, Position #1

Clint Bryson photo
Democrat


Democratic Rep. Clint Bryson is challenging Republican Rep. Jim Walsh for the 19th Legislative District, House Position 1. Bryson is a Montesano City Council member and a third-generation electrical worker whose priorities include COVID-19 recovery, improving the health care system, especially rural hospitals, and protecting the region’s fishing, crabbing, and oyster farming industries. In addition, Bryan wants to incentivize public-private partnerships to build additional affordable housing, support trade apprenticeships alongside 2- and 4-year degrees, and foster a community-centered approach to climate action.

Walsh is a conservative, two-term Republican who has voted against efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in Washington, against prohibiting bump stocks and background checks for firearm transfers, against prohibiting sexual orientation conversion therapy on minors, and more. Walsh has emerged as one of the most inflammatory members of the state House, undermining his ability to work together to get things done.

Also in this race is self-identified progressive Democrat Marianna Hopkins Everson. Everson is running on a platform of "universal healthcare, safe and affordable housing, fully-funded education, fair taxes, and a healthy economy with living-wage jobs." Her extensive policy ideas also include comprehensive criminal justice reform, infrastructure upgrades, protecting labor unions, and free point-of-care health care.

While Everson is very progressive, Bryson is running a strong campaign and has earned the overwhelming support of our progressive partners in this race. Bryson is the best choice for state House.



State Representative, Position #2

Brian Blake photo
Democrat


Rep. Brian Blake has represented the 19th Legislative District since 2002. He is currently the Chair of the House Rural Development, Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee. Blake has a moderate voting record, and like the 19th's Sen. Takko, Blake has been problematic on some environmental and gun safety legislation. On a host of other issues, however, Blake has generally taken good votes on progressive priorities.

However, his opponent Joe McEntire can be expected to promote a far-right agenda for the district. McEntire is a veteran and a chair of the Wahkiakum County Republican Party. Though he does not have a detailed policy platform available for 2020, McEntire also ran in 2018 for the same seat on the values of reducing environmental regulations and shrinking the government.

Blake is the best choice in this race.



24th Legislative District

State Senator

Kevin Van De Wege photo

Evergreen Future


Incumbent Democrat Sen. Kevin Van De Wege served as a representative for five terms before being elected to the Senate in 2016. Van De Wege is a firefighter and paramedic who has developed a moderate Democratic track record in Olympia. He has been a strong ally on environmental issues, including his co-sponsorship of a bill to require oil companies to disclose the amount of oil entering our state, the route of oil trains, and basic information for first responders.

Van De Wege is running against Republican and Port Angeles Port Commissioner Connie Beauvais. She states that she's running against new taxes - though the state is now in a coronavirus-caused budget deficit of several billion dollars. Beauvais has not said whether she would attempt to raise additional revenue or make enormous cuts to transportation funding, social services, and more. The port commissioner also says she wants to bring checks and balances to Olympia because the Legislature is currently controlled by Democrats.

Van De Wege is the best choice in this race.



State Representative, Position #1

Mike Chapman photo
Democrat


Rep. Mike Chapman is a moderate Democrat running for re-election for the 24th Legislative District, House Position 1. First elected in 2016, Chapman has fought for economic policies that create jobs in rural communities and protect the environment. This year, he was a co-sponsor of a major environmental bill to reduce state greenhouse gas emissions to zero by 2050. Chapman is also focused on producing solutions for families concerned about the quality of K-12 education and supporting economic opportunity in Washington.

Chapman is running against Daniel Charles Svoboda and Republican Sue Forde. Svoboda, who has no official affiliation but states that he is a Trump Republican, has one of the more atrocious platforms of any candidate in Washington this year. His priorities include eliminating abortion and ending legal protections for people with disabilities. Forde's campaign is focused on crime prosecution, Second Amendment rights, and reducing regulations.

Chapman is the clear choice in this race.



State Representative, Position #2

Steve Tharinger photo
Democrat

Evergreen Future


Since 2010, Democratic Rep. Steve Tharinger has been a strong progressive leader for the 24th Legislative District. Tharinger is passionate about providing affordable health care options to all Washingtonians and has been unwavering in his advocacy for innovative policies that protect the environment. Currently, he co-chairs the Joint Legislative Executive Committee on Aging and Disability and is a member of the Dementia Action Collaborative. If re-elected, Tharinger's priorities would be investing in ports and parks, strengthening health care, and recovering from the impacts of the coronavirus.

Tharinger is running against retired Army officer Brian Pruiett and nurse Jodi Wilke. Pruiett is running as a pro-business candidate. He is against state income or polluter taxes that would improve both the financial futures of constituents with low or moderate incomes and better our environmental health. He states that his main goal is to "stop the human degradation that current legislation has passed which is ruining the lives of families, communities, and harming our precious Olympic Peninsula lifestyle."

Republican Jodi Wilke is the chair of the Save Our Sequim group, which opposes the Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe's medication-assisted treatment (MAT) Clinic project. Other community members, including the Editor of the PT Leader, point out that Wilke's group has become a magnet for fear-mongering and misinformation, and that the clinic is a joint-operation between the tribe, police and social services, and medical professionals in the community.

Finally, Democrat Darren Corcoran is running to push back against a ban on high-capacity magazines and in support of Tim Eyman's I-976, which defunded transit projects for people with disabilities, bridge safety maintenance, and road repair across the state by almost $2 billion dollars.

In this time of health and economic uncertainties, the 24th Legislative District needs steady, progressive leadership that protects working people and the vulnerable, not just businesses' bottom lines. Tharinger is by far the best choice in this race.