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Eye On Olympia

Late Rep. Hailey’s spouse plans to run for his seat…

Lawmakers must speak well of Olympia to their family members.

Yesterday, the state House of Representatives welcomed new Rep. Laura Grant-Herriot, D-Walla Walla, who was appointed to the seat recently vacated by her late father, Rep. Bill Grant.

Now Pat Hailey, wife of former state Rep. Steve Hailey, R-Mesa, says she’ll run for the seat held by her late husband. Steve Hailey died of cancer in December. Former state Rep. Don Cox agreed to come out of retirement to take over Hailey’s spot.

On a recent visit to Olympia, “many of Steve’s colleagues in the House encouraged me to run and have offered to endorse me,” said Pat Hailey. She said she traveled extensively with her husband on campaigns and legislative work, getting a feel for the sprawling 9th district and the people who live there.

Owner of a family farm and a former school employee, Hailey was elected to North Franklin school board in 2005, resigning last October because she’d expected to be in Olympia with her husband for the session. She’s a Republican precinct committee officer.

Hailey said she’s talked over her plan with Cox, who she said hasn’t decided whether he’ll run this year for the seat. If he does, Hailey said, she’d drop her bid this year and happily volunteer to campaign for Cox — but that she’d still plan on running in 2010.


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Richard Roesler covers Washington state news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Olympia.

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