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Spin Control

Marr gets his first opponent for reelection

State Sen. Chris Marr, D-Spokane, will have a challenger in the November election.

Republican Michael J. Baumgartner, 34, filed paperwork last week with the state Public Disclosure Commission indicating that he will run against Marr for the senate seat representing the Sixth Legislative District, one of the most competitive districts in the state.

The competitive nature of the district attracts a lot of money, and Marr has a head start in fundraising. As of this week, Marr reports having raised about $180,000 for this year’s campaign.

Reached Monday evening, Baumgartner confirmed his run and portions of his resume. This is his first run for office. He served in Iraq and Afghanistan as an employee of the U.S. State Department. He’s a graduate of Pullman High School and Washington State University and holds a Master’s in Public Administration from Harvard University.

Baumgartner said that in Iraq he worked closely with Ryan Crocker, the Spokane Valley resident who served as U.S. ambassador to Iraq.

Photos of Baumgartner in Afghanistan can be found at, a GOP blog.

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About this blog

Jim Camden is a veteran political reporter for The Spokesman-Review.

Jonathan Brunt is an enterprise reporter for The Spokesman-Review.

Kip Hill is a general assignments reporter for The Spokesman-Review.

Nick Deshais covers Spokane City Hall for The Spokesman-Review.

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