I’ve got the news, and I’ve got it first: Dino Rossi is pulling the plug on his hopeless court challenge of Washington’s gubernatorial election!
According to a very reliable GOP source, campaign staff are preparing to call a press conference for later this afternoon, at which time Rossi will also announce that he intends to start immediately campaigning for a rematch against Gov. Christine Gregoire in 2008.
The decision came after a sometimes raucous late-night meeting at Rossi’s Bellevue headquarters, in which the normally soft-spoken Rossi repeatedly castigated state GOP Chair Chris Vance and several top members of his legal team, for misleading him about his prospects of winning in court.
According to my source, when Rossi asked if the recent revelation of nearly 1800 improperly handled provisional ballots in heavily Republican Eastern Washington would hurt his chances of prevailing in court, attorney Harry Korrell bluntly replied “No. You didn’t have much of a chance to start with.” A heated exchange followed, in which Rossi complained of being “lied to” and Vance accused Rossi of not being a “team player.”
Rossi, who continues to maintain a full campaign staff months after the official campaign ended, has asked key staffers to stay on for another three years. He will not run for Maria Cantwell’s U.S. Senate seat in 2006, having no desire to move his family to the other Washington. When asked if he would support a Vance candidacy for the Senate, Rossi reportedly quipped “I’d rather see that lying, cock-sucking, sack-of-shit roast in Hell than represent my party.”