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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Spin Control Jim Camden

MONDAY, FEB. 21, 2011

FRIDAY, FEB. 18, 2011

WA Lege Day 40: Gov signs short-term budget

OLYMPIA -- Gov. Chris Gregoire signed most of the supplemental budget designed to keep Washington from slipping into red ink by June 30, using her veto pen for several sections that added back $6.4 million of spending. She said she liked the Legislative spending plan…

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Members of  the EWU Eagles football team stand for applause from the House of Representatives and members of the gallery. (Jim Camden/staff writer)

WA Lege Day 40: EWU Eagles honored

OLYMPIA-- With a resolution that read like a sports page account of their come-from-behind Division I football championship win, the Senate honored the Eastern Washington University Eagles during this morning's session. Members of the team held the NCAA trophy high and stood with EWU President…

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THURSDAY, FEB. 17, 2011

WA Lege Day 39: Initiative law changes advance

OLYMPIA -- Proposed changes to the state's initiative laws were blasted as unconstitutional, arrogant and un-American by a Republican senator who tried to block them Thursday. No, they're an attempt to bring modernize the system and protect it, said the Democrat who sponsored the changes.…

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Brown: Lege might keep museums open 

OLYMPIA -- The Legislature may find a way to keep the Museum of Arts and Culture and the state museum in Tacoma open, despite Gov. Chris Gregoire's proposal to close them because of budget problems. Senate Majority Leader Lisa Brown said today a coalition of…

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WEDNESDAY, FEB. 16, 2011

GET program could be changed 

Washington state has to change its popular prepaid college tuition program or risk financial problems down the road, a legislative panel was told Wednesday. The Guaranteed Educational Tuition Program, known to most parents simply as GET, could face insolvency in the long-run because the fund’s…

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Baumgartner backs Marr 

OLYMPIA -- A few months ago, Mike Baumgartner and Chris Marr were locked in a generally contentious and historically expensive state Senate campaign in Spokane's 6th District. Today, Baumgartner was openly supporting Marr -- for a spot on the state Liquor Control Board. Gov. Chris…

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TUESDAY, FEB. 15, 2011

WA Lege Day 37: Dogs on chains

OLYMPIA – Keeping a dog chained up in unsafe conditions could get the owner fined under a proposed state law being considered by the state Senate. Good senators, said supporters who told the Senate Judiciary that chained or tethered dogs are more likely to turn…

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Gregoire declares disaster areas from Jan. storms

OLYMPIA -- Mid-January storms caused enough damage in Western Washington counties to rate a state of emergency declaration from Gov. Chris Gregoire today. Gregoire said preliminary estimates put the damage to homes, businesses, highways and public faciilties from storms between Jan. 9 and Jan. 26…

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MONDAY, FEB. 14, 2011

Diane Baxter adjusts a flag pin on her husband's lapel before Jeff Baxter is sworn in to a seat in the state Senate. (Jim Camden/The Spokesman-Review)

Baxter: Shocked, honored, thrilled 

Diane Baxter adjusts the flag pin on her husband Jeff Baxter's lapel before he is sworn in Monday. OLYMPIA – As he paused from unpacking books Monday onto mostly empty shelves above a mostly empty desk in his mostly empty office, the Spokane-area’s newest senator…

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Newly sworn-in Sen. Jeff Baxter and his wife Diane watch as Supreme Court Justice Jim Johnson signs the oath of office Baxter took Monday morning as the new senator from Spokane's 4th Legislative District.  (Jim Camden/The Spokesman-Review)

WA Lege Day 36: Baxter sworn in

OLYMPIA -- Wasting no time after being named to the open 4th District Senate seat Friday evening, Jeff Baxter was sworn in Monday morning in a brief ceremony before the day's session got underway. With his wife Diane holding the family Bible, Baxter took the…

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SATURDAY, FEB. 12, 2011

FRIDAY, FEB. 11, 2011

Gregoire signs Unemployment Insurance changes

Changes to the state’s unemployment insurance system that will stop tax increases for businesses and temporarily increase benefits for jobless workers were signed Friday as the first completed legislation of this session. With all sides applauding each other for bipartisan and bicameral cooperation, Gov. Chris…

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Sen. Mike Baumgartner, R-Spokane, talks with Sen. Randi Becker Friday on the Senate floor. (Jim Camden, Spokesman-Review)

Baumgartner ribbed for 'sexiest' honor 

Sen. Mike Baumgartner talks with Sen. Randi Becker Friday on the Senate floor. OLYMPIA -- Spokane Sen. Mike Baumgartner is taking a fair amount of ribbing from colleagues today, not for a vote he took but for one that was taken on him, naming him…

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THURSDAY, FEB. 10, 2011

WEDNESDAY, FEB. 9, 2011

TUESDAY, FEB. 8, 2011

WA Lege Day 29: Craft liquor at farmers marts

OLYMPIA – Locally distilled liquor could be bought at farmer’s markets along with organic tomatoes and hand-made candles under a plan being considered by the Legislature. And customers in state liquor stores would be able to taste test some pricy or exotic brands before buying…

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MONDAY, FEB. 7, 2011

Shea: Attacks anti-Christian, anti-veteran 

The process to fill an empty Senate seat in the Spokane Valley’s 4th Legislative District has resulted in “vicious personal attacks” aimed at himself, his family and “our constitutional foundations and Christian principles,” state Rep. Matt Shea, one of the candidates for the opening, said.…

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Superbowl omissions: Which more annoying?

Which was the worse pre-Super Bowl omission: Christina Aguilera leaving out a line from the Star Spangled Banner? Or the network leaving out whole sections of the Declaration of Independence? By now everyone knows Aguilera botched the national anthem, leaving out "O'er the ramparts we…

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SATURDAY, FEB. 5, 2011

If students aren't learning, who's to blame? 

Whom do you hold responsible for the problems Washington schools have graduating kids who can read, write, calculate and be intellectually flexible enough to have a dozen careers before they retire? Put another way, whom do you blame for the fact that nearly one kid…

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Jim Camden
Jim Camden joined The Spokesman-Review in 1981 and retired in 2021. He is currently the political and state government correspondent covering Washington state.

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