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Posts tagged: Art Coday

Baumgartner picks up ‘D’ endorsement

OLYMPIA — With the primary over for everything except the certification, losers are apt to be endorsing winners who will move on to the general.

So it's no surprise that U.S. Senate candidate Art Coday, who finished third, has endorsed fellow Republican Mike Baumgartner in his run against incumbent Democrat Maria Cantwell. Republicans endorsing other Republicans, or Democrats endorsing other Democrats don't qualify as news, even in the dog days of summer.

But Baumgartner picked up the endorsement of another of his primary rivals. Democrat Timmy (Doc) Wilson.

Wilson finished fourth. He ran on what some people would consider a “progressive” platform, calling for an immediate end to wars and higher taxes on the upper income segments, more investment in infrastructure and technology. This week he endorsed Baumgartner, who doesn't share his views on taxes, over fellow Democrat Cantwell, saying he thought the challenger would do a better job of working with both parties to get things done.

So that's good news for Baumgartner. Bad news: adding Coday's votes and Wilson's votes to his total — and all the rest of the challengers, for that matter — still leaves Baumgartner about 150,000 votes behind Cantwell.

Coday drops from U.S. Senate race

Art Coday, one of a flock of Republican candidates who were in the U.S. Senate race, said today he’s getting out and supporting Dino Rossi.

Coday said he’ll run for an open state House of Representatives seat in the 32nd Legislative District instead.

Coday, a Shoreline physician, said none of the other candidates’ views matched his perfectly, but he’s been a longtime supporter of Rossi, backing both of Rossi’s bids for governor.

“I think highly of each of these guys,” Coday said. “I think Dino has the best chance of beating Patty Murray.”

Rossi, who has been discussed as a possible candidate for months, officially entered the crowded race on Wednesday. Staying in are (alphabetically) Paul Akers, Don Benton, Clint Didier, Skip Mercer, Sean Salazar and Craig Williams.

And, of course, Murray, a Democrat seeking her fourth term. In the state’s Top Two primary system, they all appear on the ballot together (along with anyone else deciding to file next month). The two top vote-getters go on to the November general election, regardless of party preference.

Rossi entrance not clearing GOP field

ino Rossi’s long expected entrance into the U.S. Senate race did not prompt a mass exodus by other Republican candidates Wednesday. Several said they welcomed the competition of the former state senator who has been weighing the race for months.

Rossi, who announced his candidacy on the Internet early Wednesday morning after months of weighing his options, has statewide name recognition from two runs for governor and enters the race with the support of top Senate Republicans. But at least five active GOP candidates said they’ll stick in the race.

That includes state Sen. Don Benton of Vancouver, who has amassed a list of endorsements from GOP office holders, and former NFL player and Connell farmer Clint Didier who has the support of Sarah Palin.

Voters will now have a choice between a “GOP established candidate or a citizen statesman who is a part of the grass roots movement,” Didier said in a press release after Rossi’s 7 a.m. announcement was posted on the Internet.

Benton called Rossi a friend whom he will enjoy debating, while taking a shot at Rossi’s Washington, D.C., establishment backing: “We can no longer look to the establishment to turn our economy and our country around. The people want an independent voice that will take on both parties and stand up for common sense and fiscal responsibility.”

Sean Salazar, a Seattle chiropractor who specializes in sports injuries, offered to drop out months ago and support Rossi if the former gubernatorial candidate would get in the race then, spokeswoman Kandy Schendel said, but Rossi took too long to decide. “He’s not going anywhere. We’ve put so much work into this campaign, the volunteers are saying ‘You better not jump the race.’”

Salazar is building a coalition among voters that Rossi and some other Republicans ignore, such as Asian-Americans, African-Americans and Hispanics, she said.

Craig Williams, a PacifiCorp energy trader and real estate broker from Vancouver, said he considers Rossi and all the other GOP candidates friends and won’t run against them. “Our focus is Patty Murray.” He said while Rossi and others court the far right, he’ll seek support from a broader spectrum of Republicans, independents and Democrats in the Top Two primary.
“It’s really not a primary, it’s two general elections in a row,” Williams said.

Paul Akers, a Bellingham businessman, is staying in the race, a spokesman said. He released a statement saying his expertise in “empowering people and eliminating wasteful spending” was what the nation needed.

Skip Mercer, a Seattle physicist and professor at the University of Washington, will likely stay in the race but may run as an independent, his wife Lisa Mercer said. Skip Mercer is on a ship in the Philippine Sea doing research and may not even know that Rossi is formally in the race, she said.

Mercer’s campaign website has a picture of him with Rossi taken months ago. Whether he’ll remove the photo is “a decision he has yet to make,” she said

Only one candidate in the race Tuesday said he was getting out because Rossi was got in. Ed Torres of Orting, a general superintendent for a plumbing firm, said he was throwing his support to Rossi.

Another, Art Coday, a Shoreline physician, “is still in a decision-making process,” a spokesman said.

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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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