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Spin Control

Posts tagged: doc hastings

Holmquist Newby may run for Congress

OLYMPIA — State Sen. Janea Holmquist Newbry said she has formed a committee to explore whether to run for the congressional seat opening up in Central Washington's 4th District.

Holmquist Newbry, R-Moses Lake, said she plans to visit “with key leaders throughout the district… to assess the viability of my candidacy.”

U.S. Rep. Doc Hastings announced Thursday morning that he would not seek re-election to the seat he has held for 20 years. Holmquist Newbry said shortly afterwards she had not made a decision on whether to run “at this time.”

Friday she said she has formed an exploratory committee with several key advisers, including Yakima Mayor Micah Cawley.  Under federal election law, a person can receive and spend money before becoming an official candidate by forming an exploratory committee.

First elected to the House in 2000, Holmquist Newbry was elected to the Senate in 2006, where she now serves as the chairwoman of the Commerce and Labor Committee. She recently removed her name from the list of senators on the website for the Majority Coalition Caucus, telling the Seattle Times she was protesting decisions by some of the more moderate members of the caucus. 

The 4th is a solidly Republican district that routinely gave Hastings at least 60 percent of the vote in his re-election campaigns. Also considering the race is rancher Clint Didier, an unsuccessful candidate for U.S. Senate and state lands commissioner, who may make an announcement on Monday.

Is Doc Hastings eying House Oversight chair?

Politico's Rachel Bade reports this morning U.S. Rep. Doc Hastings, R-Pasco, may be considering a slot as chairman of the House of Representative Oversight Committee, to be vacated by Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., at the end of next year.

“Call this Boehner ally and personal friend the wild card,” Bade writes, introducing the nine-term House Republican who was the last to defeat current Washington Gov. Jay Inslee in a Congressional race when he wrangled the District 4 seat from Inslee, the incumbent, in 1994.

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Hastings introduces permanent sales tax deduction bill

Another volley has been launched at the temporary status of the sales tax deduction on federal income tax returns. Once again, it comes from a Washington lawmaker.

Rep. Doc Hastings, R-Pasco, filed a bill with Rep. Jeff Miller, R-Fla., Tuesday that would make permanent a sales tax deduction written into the federal tax code. Current law, solidified in last year's fiscal cliff deal, extends the deduction through next year only. Meanwhile, taxpayers enjoy the income tax deduction on a permanent basis.

Like others before him, including Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash., who authored similar legislation across Capitol Hill in January, Hastings argued the issue is one of fairness for states that collect no income tax.

“Residents of states that do not collect income taxes, like my home state of Washington, should be allowed to continue to deduct their state sales taxes from their federal income tax obligations each year without relying on short term extensions of the law,” Hastings said in a prepared statement Tuesday announcing the bill.

WA congresspersons to Pentagon: Keep tanker timeline

Five members of Washington’s congressional delegation joined an effort to keep the Pentagon from delaying its selection the builder of the next air refueling tanker by asking Defense Secretary Robert Gates not to extend the timeline for making that choice.
Without mentioning either company by name, they are supporting the Boeing Co., and trying to close out rival Airbus.
Republican Reps. Cathy McMorris Rodgers and Doc Hastings, and Democrats Jay Inslee, Adam Smith and Rick Larsen are among 16 members of the House urging Gates not to vary from the 75-day selection deadline announced in February. Their stated reasons include eight years of delay already in replacing the KC-135s, and the additional costs to taxpayers.

The KC-135, which was designed by Boeing in the 1950s and built through the early 1960s, is the backbone of the U.S. Air Force tanker fleet and the plane flown by the 92nd Air Refueling Wing and the Washington Air National Guard’s 141st Air Refueling Wing, both based at Fairchild Air Force Base.
Finding a replacement for part of the KC-135 fleet started some nine years ago, and has been marked by fraud, collusion, political bickering and pandering, mistakes and missteps. Meanwhile, the 135s keep flying in two war zones and for a variety of other military missions around the globe.
The process to select a new tanker is a subject of intense interest, the members of Congress wrote, but “the need for new tankers is long overdue.”
A consortium that included Northrop Grumman and EADS, the manufacturer of Airbus, beat out Boeing for an estimated $40 billion contract in early 2008. That award was thrown out a few months later after Boeing protested and the Government Accountability Office found problems with the selection process. New specifications were announced in February and Boeing notified the Air Force eight days later it would enter a new bid, again using a version of its 767 jetliner.
Four days later, Northrop Grumman said it wasn’t entering the competition. In late March, however, EADS said it would submit a proposal if the deadline was extended and “there is a fair chance to win.”

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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.

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