Two statewide races on the Nov. 3 ballot have less visibility than the governor’s race but still carry the potential for significant impact on Washington. A longtime Democratic politician and a Republican incumbent have shown they deserve voters’ support for lieutenant governor and secretary of state, respectively.
Looking to cement their majority in the Legislature, Democrats are spending big in 6th Legislative District races. The Democratic candidates for Positions 1 and 2 have raised more than $350,000 combined this year, more than double what the Republican incumbents have raised.
With Election Day rapidly approaching, we offer recommendations in four races for statewide offices that often don’t get the attention they deserve: superintendent of public instruction, auditor, treasurer and commissioner of public lands. Three incumbents deserve reelection. One does not.
In Washington’s 3rd Legislative District, three incumbents are asking voters for another term. We recommend voters oblige them. Sen. Andy Billig, Rep. Marcus Riccelli and Rep. Timm Ormsby have done well by the district, and their opponents don’t offer compelling reasons to change course.
Two of the three Spokane County commissioners are up for re-election, and each faces a strong challenger. Criminal justice reform, the county budget in a pandemic-induced recession, assistance for economic victims of COVID-19, open union negotiations and more will demand the attention of the winners.
It’s a refreshingly light year for ballot measures, and only two of them actually do anything. Referendum 90 would require sex education in public schools. And Senate Joint Resolution 8212 would allow the state’s new Long-Term Care Trust Fund to invest in the stock market. We recommend a yes vote on each.
Matt Shea isn’t on the ballot this year, but his shadow hangs over the races in the 4th Legislative District. Shea is the disgraced former state representative who resigned this year after a scathing investigation all but accused him of treason. Yet in some corners of the district, people hang onto his most outlandish and belligerent ideas. It’s time for moderate, sensible voters to make a clean break from them.
If you live in Spokane and lost income because of the COVID-19 pandemic, you might be eligible for rental assistance. The city is distributing money from the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act. The hitch? Your landlord must live in the city, too, or have a “principal place of business in Spokane.”
In ordinary times, a community’s fairgrounds would be an extremely unlikely setting for a civil or criminal trial. These aren’t ordinary times. Thanks to a bit of creative thinking by local officials, “All rise!” may soon replace “Step right up!” at the Spokane County Fairgrounds & Expo Center.
Spokane County received $90 million under the federal CARES Act. That money is meant to help the community adapt to and rebound from the pandemic. It’s not supposed to be a slush fund for projects unrelated to COVID-19 such as implementing an electronic filing system at the county clerk’s office.
Three public health advocates recently kicked a hornets’ nest when they asked Spokane City Council to add fluoride to the city’s drinking water. Let the hornets buzz. Council should add fluoride to the city’s water to improve the dental health of all residents.
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