We’ve known this day would come for years. Congressman Jay Inslee (D-WA-01) is now running for governor.
As a constituent of Rep. Inslee, I am pleased by the announcement. Jay is progressive. He has a strong record on the environment. He sees an important role of technological leadership in the economy of the future. Basically, he is strong on many of the issues that are important to me.
And he is one of the few politicians around who can beat Rob McKenna. That’s particularly to me, as I have watched this state embark upon a journey toward Alabamization—a journey that would be furthered with a Gov. McKenna. Don’t believe me? Look at what is happening in every state with a newly elected Republican Governor….
I am not claiming that Inslee will win, just that he can. It’s going to be a battle.
In 2004, Dino Rossi almost won the Governor’s mansion because the voters never really got to know him. Rossi was a known quantity by 2008, and the voters rejected him (and one more time after that).
In 2012 the problem will be that people think they know McKenna. McKenna has skillfully spun himself as a moderate while capitalizing on his AG position to pass himself off as a populist. But there is evidence to suggest McKenna is far more conservative than people’s perception of him. The one slip-up in this regard was McKenna’s surprising decision to join the lawsuit against the Affordable Health Care Act. What other surprises does Rob McKenna have for us?
Inslee, with his rich legislative record, is a known quantity, but not well known by Washingtonians. I suspect that the more people get to know Inslee, the better they will like him. For McKenna, the more people get to know him…the less they will like him. So let the learning begin!