State Sen. Craig Pridemore, D-Vancouver(49th LD,) will announce his candidacy for Congress in WA-03 within the next 24 hours, sources close to Pridemore tell me.
The other announced Democrat is state Rep. Deb Wallace, D-Vancouver (17th LD,) who entered the race last week, after the decision by incumbent U.S. Rep. Brian Baird, D-Wash., not to seek another term.
Announced Republicans include former Bush administration official David Castillo, Washougal city council member Jon Russell, and “yelling town hall man” David Hedrick. Also reportedly interested is state Rep. Jaime Herrera, R-Ridgefield (18th LD.)
The third district stretches from its population center in Clark County at its south end (just across the river from Portland, Or.,) to parts of Thurston County, home of the state capital Olympia. Longview-Kelso in Cowlitz County and Centralia-Chehalis in Lewis County are less populated but still significant population areas.
And for the last time, the district is not as conservative as people from Seattle and the Clark County Republican Party seem to think. It’s a flat-out swing district, and Clark County’s media landscape is dominated by Portland television stations, who generally come across the river only for things that are bleeding or snowing.
There’s a lot riding on who puts together the best campaigns and articulates the rising discontent regular people have towards our government and the elite institutions that very nearly destroyed everything.
So there’s no reason not to state the obvious: I will be an early and enthusiastic supporter of Pridemore. He’s a smart, tough, seasoned politician who still knows who he is and why he is in public service. And I genuinely mean no disrespect for Wallace with that statement; she is a fine Democrat in her own right and will deservedly have many supporters. But Craig’s my guy, just so I’m clear about that.
I suppose this will set off a predictable flurry of talk about who can win, and that discussion has happened over the last few days in phone calls and emails all over the district anyhow. Personally I believe either of them could win a general election, so I’m not going to cast any stones in that regard.
Pridemore has won both county wide and in his admittedly more liberal legislative district. Nothing wrong with that, and if Pridemore is willing to put his neck out there and fight for what he believes in, then more power to him. He’s also very, very bright, articulate and good with numbers, so anyone facing him in a general election will need to be on their game. Don’t let anyone from down here play games with you about his chances, he’s the real deal.