The September 30, 2008 Columbian Political Beat treated us to announcing some of the Association of Washington Business Political Endorsements.
Actually, Kathie Durbin seemed to make more of a point as to which Republicans did not receive their endorsement and informing us that the AWB endorsed 12 Democrats.
To be fair to Kathie, while she did announce which local Republicans they did endorse, she somehow neglected to mention their endorsement for the most important race facing us, the Governorship. They endorsed Dino Rossi over Christine Gregoire.
While mentioning they did not endorse local Republican candidates, somehow the names of the local Democrats they did not endorse escaped mention.
A full list of candidates from both parties they did endorse may be seen at AWB Endorsements.
As I mentioned, Kathie does make a point of letting us know that 12 Democrats were endorsed by the AWB, I count 14 if you include the Lieutenant Governor and State Auditor offices. She does not let us know that they endorsed 58 Republicans, though and 1 Independent.
While I am disappointed at the lack of endorsement of some candidates, they have the freedom to endorse whomever they deem worthy of office. I do not find any criteria used to arrive at their endorsements, so I won’t speculate.
Particularly disappointing is seeing they did not endorse Tom Langston, Joseph James or Debbie Peterson, who Ms. Durbin identifies as, “the Vancouver schoolteacher and third-bridge proponent who is running against Jim Jacks.”
I find Debbie to be much more than that and see Kathie’s description as a slur on Debbie Peterson, especially knowing that the Columbian endorses Jim Jacks, who you may recall answered a question at the League of Women’s Voters Debate on changing Washington’s Tax System with, “I don’t know how to solve it, I’m not a tax expert.”
Debbie Peterson expressed clear and pertinent ideas on solving the projected multi-billion dollar tax deficit we face.
Tom Langston is a very capable candidate, but seems to lack the polish a more experienced politician like Craig Pridemore possesses. That is not a slur against Tom because that political polish often hides true political intent from voters and I find it refreshing to see and hear a candidate who portrays honesty and sound principles. Tom is a business owner himself who would take with him to the Senate business experience in turning a profit without having to rely on raising taxes as the sole means to prevent he projected deficit Governor Gregoire has us currently facing.
Most disappointing from James’s opponent was seeing his web page resorting to the old dirty tactics of mud throwing instead of standing on his own merit. Aren’t we tired of that yet?
Ms. Durbin also makes a point to let us know that Micheline Doan did not receive their endorsement either. Reading her description of Michelene we see her described as, “the anti-tolling activist and president of the Clark County Republican Women’s Club.”
I find it curious that Ms. Durbin seems to rely on such demeaning descriptions of Republican candidates, especially the women, while not mentioning that the Democrats may be “tax and spend,” “big government proponents,” “leftwing activists” or “Public Transportation Activists.”
She does make certain to mention certain Democrats, but makes no mention that they too did not receive the coveted Association of Washington Business endorsement.
Then again, the Columbian never has reported on Jim Jacks lack of preparation or coherent answer at the League of Women Voters Debate against Debbie Peterson.
Endorsements do make news and are important, if we wish to follow others instead of relying on our own common sense. We can usually expect conservative organizations to endorse Republicans and you can bank on Unions and leftist groups to endorse Democrats, sometimes blindly it seems.
Rather than rely on endorsements, though, I encourage all to study each candidate, read their web sites and if possible, meet them at public events. We each receive but one vote per race and it is up to us to decide who represents us, not the Columbian, Unions or even the WAB.
Listen to why they may endorse or oppose a particular candidate, but place more importance in your own common sense, not what someone wants you to hear.
Look past the bias of our local paper and partisans, do your homework and let’s send the best candidates we can to Olympia.
Give these Republican candidates a chance and you just may discover how they can shine instead of taking away from us for pet projects.