There is plenty of excitement ahead in South King County legislative races this election season.
In the 30th Legislative District, Democratic incumbent State Rep. Jamila Taylor will be challenged by three Republicans. The primary will advance only the top two, of which Taylor seems likely to be one. The three Republicans will battle it out to see who the other one will be. Although candidate Janis Clark has run before, she has also run in Tacoma and has not scored well in South King County.
My guess is Federal Way Police Commander Casey Jones is the most likely to meet Taylor in the general election. His message should resonate well enough to out-distance the other two Republicans. Even with the different views between the political parties, it is a logical match-up.
The other House seat in the 30th District has two Democrats and two Republicans after the same position that is being vacated by former State Rep. Jesse Johnson. Look for Kristine Reeves, due to her experience as a former legislator, to move on to the general election ahead of Carey Anderson, Ashli Tagoai and Mark Green, who is a perennial candidate. Tagoai is an aggressive candidate who went to law school and is not a fan of police reform efforts. She called them misguided, which should ensure her advancing to the general election where she will likely to face Reeves.
In the Senate race for the 30th District, incumbent Claire Wilson, a former school board member, has assumed she would face Federal Way City Councilmember Linda Kochmar. But Mark Christie has filed, forcing a battle with Kochmar in the primary. Wilson will be able to save contributions for the general election as Kochmar and Christie fight for the second spot.
In the 47th District, Democrat Debra Entenman holds one House seat against two Republicans. Entenman has raised over $21,000 against Jessie Ramsey and Kyle Lyebyedyev. The other state representative position was held by Pat Sullivan, a Democrat who has decided to retire after 18 years in the Legislature. The 47th District is made up of parts of Kent, Covington and Auburn. Democrats include Chris Stearns (an Auburn City Councilmember) and Shukri Olow, along with Republicans Carmen Goers, Barry Knowles and Ted Cooke to round out the candidates.
The Senate candidates for the 47th District are an interesting group. Claudia Kauffman held this Senate until Joe Fain defeated her. Current incumbent Mona Das has dropped out of the race, opening the door for fellow Kent City Councilmembers Bill Boyce, who has raised more than $83,479 and is a Republican, and Satwinder Kaur, who has raised $45,700 and is a Democrat. Two Kent City Councilmembers should make for some interesting debates.
But the fun might be in the 31st District because former state Republican Party Chair Chris Vance has filed as a non-partisan candidate for a race that also includes independent Cliff Knopik, who doesn’t believe the COVID data. My guess is that Vance believes Republican incumbent Phil Fortunato has made himself vulnerable by not following the rules with COVID. So all Vance has to do is finish first or second in the primary, and he has a chance to win the seat in November.
All three incumbents in the 33rd District are unopposed, so Sen. Karen Kaiser and House members Tina Orwell and Mia Su-Ling Gregerson will get a free ride back to Olympia unless someone mounts a write-in campaign.
In addition to the race for King County Prosecutor, another race to watch is for Secretary of State. Steve Hobbs was appointed by Gov. Jay Inslee, even though he had no experience running elections. It will be a crowded field. Trying to replace Kim Wyman are Keith Wagoner, a Republican from Sedro Wooley who has expressed his interest before; Mark Miloscia, who resigned as head of the Christen Conservatory Policy Institute to run for the job. Also running is the person who probably should have been appointed in the first place, Julie Anderson, who is Pierce County’s Auditor, which means she is actually trained to do the job. She feels so strongly that the position should be non-partisan that she filed that way.
Federal Way resident Bob Roegner is a former mayor of Auburn. Contact email@example.com.