Talking to several people at Drinking Liberally yesterday, there’s a real question of where the local netroots should be headed. A lot of people are glad that the netroots got involved in the Burner-Tom primary (moreso than I was, as I was still undecided if leaning). And there is some discussion of primary challengers to entrenched Democrats in the legislature who aren’t pulling their weight.

Many Seattle Democrats and other Democrats in safe seats aren’t doing their part. It’s not just about liberal issues; most of the caucus from safe seats votes correctly most of the time. But too much of the leadership is coming from some more suburban swing districts. I’m not sure, for instance, why the impeachment resolution had to come from a suburban first term Democrat. I’m not sure why the leader on drug policy reform is a suburban first term Democrat. I’d like the safe Democrats to do more of this, and if they aren’t willing, I’d like to see them replaced.

That said, I’m not as convinced about the netroots’ ability to turn a primary as some people. We’ve still got a fairly small audience, and while we can raise some money, we aren’t enough on our own. We can maybe influence some media, but we’re still only writing to a small number of voters. We’ll also almost certainly be more divided than in a general election contest, as some people will inevitably take the side of the incumbents who got elected for a reason, and more bloggers will stay out.

Finally, there’s the question of who to primary. Ultimately, it would be the choice of whoever is willing to run. But given the problems above, we couldn’t support it if all the deadwood got challenged at the same time. Some will be better candidates, and some will run against worse incumbents.


  1. 2

    Marcel spews:

    Didn’t that Sen. Prentice support giving the ball club large amounts of public money?

    What, she is for socialism for rich corporations??

  2. 3


    You mean a one-term suburban first-term Democrat, don’t you? Trust me, Eric Oemig maybe got the netroots all orgasmic, but his consituents felt betrayed, and Demos in the legislature, as well as every newspaper on the planet, including The Stranger, thought his stunt was show-off grand-standing.

    The Piper

  3. 4

    Susan spews:

    *waves hand in air*

    Ooh, ooh, call on me, I have an idea!

    If your local King Co Dems aren’t turning up the heat for ya, how ’bout this: Volunteer and donate to some nice PIERCE County Candidates in tough swing districts, where your little extra push might be what it takes to knock off a neocon/batshit crazy Incumbent (read: Joyce McDonald, Mike Carrell, either Roach, etc). We need your help, and if enough fighters get down to Olympia, we’ll have the pull to smack some sense into your lazy Seattle lawmakers.

  4. 5

    Phil spews:

    First of all, the caucuses plan who introduces bills on hot buttons issues and who “leads” on them for campaign purposes. You can’t just look at it on the surface level.

    Secondly, the local netroots isn’t even close to being powerful enough to take a legislator out. Any effort would be crushed by the Chopp/Pelz machine and then they would likely become extremely hostile. A losing effort just to have the State Party pissed at us? Very bad idea in my opinion.

    Also, there isn’t really any anger at these members who aren’t “doing their part” in the local LD/county organizations (with a few exceptions of course, such as Sheldon and to a lesser extent Jacobson). In order for such a primary to be successful, you’d have to create an entire new volunteer and fund raising base and somehow make it defeat a very well organized and well-funded establishment. So again, a losing effort that would just lead to the establishment being pissed at us.

  5. 6



    I’m not sure there’s someone better than Chopp waiting in the wings either for speaker or for his seat.


    And she supports payday lenders. Not sure how tight her district is.


    Certainly, I’d like to take out more Republicans. But we’ve got almost two thirds in both houses for goodness sake. How many Seattle Dems whose districts rejected 747 are going to vote for 1% tomorrow?

    With the primary moved earlier, we’ll have a better opportunity to push for more and better Democrats next year. But we really do need both.

  6. 7

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    “How many Seattle Dems whose districts rejected 747 are going to vote for 1% tomorrow?”

    Is that what’s pushing this idea? I suspect so. I don’t think the netroots can take out Democratic incumbents. The netroots has limited reach and power. What it CAN do successfully is swing close races. That’s where efforts should be focused. If the netroots can help Darcy take out do-nothing congressman Reichert (who has been in office for two years and still hasn’t hugged a rabbit!), that’s huge.

  7. 8

    ivan spews:

    Marcel @ 2:

    Margarita Prentice will piss on all your graves. Anyone fool enough to primary her will be CRUSHED!

    Susan @ 4:

    It would be nice to knock off Mike Carrell, but nobody, I mean nobody, outcampaigns that guy. Joyce McDonald is not running for re-election, but will seek a seat on the County Council.

  8. 9



    Who’d want to hug a filthy, flea-biten rodent when what you should do is skin him out, toss him the pan with flour and seasonings, and fry him up? After all, that’s what rabbits were put on earth for…that and apparel made from their skins.

    The Piper

  9. 10

    exelizabeth spews:

    @1: YES! Boot Frank Chopp! He is my “representative” but he hardly represents his district, because he doesn’t have to. I would at least like him to wake up and remember that, uh, HE HAS CONSTITUENTS other than the Democratic Party.

    Mostly I am bitter because I wrote to him (about condo conversion, an important issue in his district), and he never wrote back. Then I wrote again saying I had written and never heard back, and… he never wrote back. What the hell does he pay his staff for?

  10. 12

    proud leftist spews:

    Piper @ 9 (with all due apologies to Roger Rabbit)
    I had stuffed rabbit leg at a small restaurant in Ballard a week or two back. It was remarkable. As the Colonel said, “finger-licking good.” I didn’t even have to put catsup on it.

  11. 14

    michael spews:


    Yay, good idea!

    The 26th LD is a swing district and Pat Lantz (who is awesome) is retiring from the house so we need a good person (don’t look at me, I’d be a horrid) to run and lots of help to get them in.

  12. 15

    proud leftist spews:

    Those of us on the left have made apologies for our liberalism for far too long. At least since the Reagan years, and probably before that, we have failed to stand up and confidently declare who we are and what we are about. Liberals have been branded in the media as effete and unAmerican. Somehow, we let the media, and rightwing politicians, get away with that. In reality, we are the heart of America, and our views are in the dead center of the American consensus. When Democrats in a blue state like Washington cannot forcefully push our values, it is distressing. Frank Chopp could do a better job. We could be a leader among states, pressing innovative solutions to what troubles all states. I would like to see our legislative (and executive) Democrats grow some balls (figuratively speaking, of course).

  13. 17



    Name! I want the name of the place so I may patronize!

    But Ballard??? Norske Rabbit? What’s that? Rabbit smothered in cream of mushroom soup?

    Does your place have a lunch menu?

    The Piper

  14. 18

    Puddybud spews:

    Proud Leftist@15: Your elitist actions spoke more about you than anything from your mouth. But this statement shows your true colors:

    You wrote: “When Democrats in a blue state like Washington cannot forcefully push our values, it is distressing.” Smacks of elitism.

  15. 19

    proud leftist spews:

    Piper @ 17
    Someone else made the reservations, so I have trouble with the name. It started with a V, just one word, and is on Ballard Avenue. Sorry, I can’t do better than that. The boar was also outstanding.

  16. 21



    Is it DeVino’s?

    DiVino Restaurant4 star ratingbased on 20 reviews Rating Details »
    Category: Italian [Edit]

    Neighborhood: Ballard
    5310 Ballard Ave NW
    (between N 22nd Ave & Vernon Pl)
    Seattle, WA 98107
    (206) 297-0143

    Add Photos Price Range: $$

    The Piper

  17. 22

    proud leftist spews:

    Puddy @ 18
    I suppose, from some perspective, the words “forcefully push our values” could sound elitist. I would suggest, however, that forcefully pushing values is what elected officials should do. I would rather have legislators standing up for what they believe is right, and voting that way, than have politicians sticking a wet finger up in the air and trying to figure out which way the wind temporarily blows. Principles matter, and I’d like to know what principles my elected representatives hold. I don’t believe that is elitist. Legislators who govern by speculating what the electorate might want at any given moment generally get it wrong. I’ll vote for someone I disagree with from time to time if that individual displays a predictable pattern of voting, based on his or her own beliefs.

  18. 23

    Susan spews:

    @8: “It would be nice to knock off Mike Carrell, but nobody, I mean nobody, outcampaigns that guy.”

    Oh, we will. That’s my district, baby, and he ain’t gettin’ a free ride next year.

    @11: “Susan we’d come down if there were a nice light rail link…”

    …*sob*… I tried… 450 f***ing calls on election day alone…

  19. 24

    michael spews:


    Pat’s done great things for the area. She helped get free kindergarten classes started in Gig Harbor way back in the day (late 60’s. Maybe 1968-1970).

  20. 25

    Puddybud spews:

    Proud Leftist: “than have politicians sticking a wet finger up in the air and trying to figure out which way the wind temporarily blows.”

    This is our complaint over how Democrats try to lead! I am glad you decided to put these truths in pixels!

  21. 27

    Puddybud spews:

    Pelletizer (TM) blogged: ““How many Seattle Dems whose districts rejected 747 are going to vote for 1% tomorrow?”

    Well as I see it we should write in a special law. If a district voted against a specific tax reducing referendum and it passed, then that district is not bound by the rate reduction and will pay at the higher rate.

    So if your district voted against 747, then your district will pay the banked fees and the standard 5-6% yearly uptick rate. HEY IT’S A DEMOCRACY. You make your choice at the ballot box, so live with it. Since Seattlites like paying higher taxes and fees go for it. I’m sure Goldy can lower his thermostat another few degrees to “stay warmer” fuming over his higher voted in taxes.

    Tim Eyman – I think this should be the 2008 referendum du jour!

  22. 30

    Puddybud spews:

    What is the Democrat position on this ABC News (Oops… vast wingnut (TM) conspiracy) story:

    CHARLES GIBSON: Finally, we don’t normally have birth announcements on this broadcast, but tonight, an exception. The new arrival is just 48 hours old, and we introduce you to her because earlier this month, we introduced you to her mother, who spent her pregnancy fighting to save her baby’s life and her own. In the course of just a few days last April, Linda Sanchez learned she was pregnant, and that she had breast cancer.

    LINDA SANCHEZ, Cancer patient: It’s a lot to think about April.

    GIBSON: Her doctor told her she could abort the baby, but Linda found specialists who told her there was another choice, that she could treat the cancer and carry her child to term.

    Dr. Jennifer Litton, M.D. Anderson Cancer Center: Yes, chemotherapy is toxic, but what we found is that when given in the second and third trimester, it appears to be safe.

    GIBSON: And so Linda underwent several rounds of a specific type of chemotherapy. And by early this month, her tumor had shrunk 60 percent. Then, this week, Linda checked into a hospital, labor was induced, and on Monday-

    UNIDENTIFIED WOMAN: The delivery went picture perfect.

    GIBSON: Meet Isabella Marie Sanchez, five pounds, two ounces. 18 inches long, and born with a full head of hair. Just the 70th baby born in what was once a controversial program for pregnant women with breast cancer.

    SANCHEZ: She’s something. I’m just really happy I finally have her here. Because I felt like I waited forever.

    GIBSON: Linda knows this is not the end of her battle with cancer, but she is optimistic.

    SANCHEZ: I’ve got about four more sessions of chemo at every three weeks, and then, after that is surgery, and after surgery, we’re gonna do radiation. And that should be it.

    GIBSON: Mother and child, Linda and Isabella, are expected to go home from the hospital this evening.

    Puddy Commentary: May the God I serve bless the mother and child. May mom beat the cancer, watch her daughter child grow up, and may she see her grandchildren if Jesus delays is Second Coming until then!

  23. 33

    Puddybud spews:

    I haven’t heard of seen any position on this in Democrat primaries:

    “Should the Salvation Army be able to require its employees to speak English? You wouldn’t think that’s controversial. But House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is holding up a $53 billion appropriations bill funding the FBI, NASA and Justice Department solely to block an attached amendment, passed by both the Senate and House, that protects the charity and other employers from federal lawsuits over their English-only policies.”

    Why do liberals take the most common sense things and make them controversial?

  24. 34



    GREAT POST!!!!

    I di nit have te time for a real reply but I think the core of what you are saying is that the netroots have an opportunity to grow but not yet the numbers or the organization to do so.

    Personally I think all reosurces should gfo to Darcy, if only as a show of strength. Beyond that we need more development and focus and a way to achieve that w/o turning into the enemy.

  25. 37

    Marcel spews:

    Dear Ivan:

    your belligerence is noted. It appears very Americain — a type of proudly ignorant machismo lacking in style. Similar to the President Bush, or an angry dog.

    But apart from your tone, why do you support Sen. Prentice who wants to give welfare to capitalist ball team owners and who supports payday lenders?

    Are those the priorities of the Democratic Party? Of the “liberal” and “progressive” Puget Sound area?

  26. 38

    ivan spews:


    Because I am not a one- or two-issue voter, because Margarita Prentice is not a one- or two-issue state Senator, and because Democrats are a big-tent party and we differ on many issues.

  27. 39

    Puddybud spews:

    YLB – The Clueless One – It is so easy to close your mind to real facts. It is a single celled organism in that oversize nearly vacuous cranial orifice residing midst your gluteus maximus.

    In other words you sit on your small brain!

  28. 40

    YLB spews:

    may she see her grandchildren if Jesus delays is Second Coming until then!

    There goes your ugly vanity again. I don’t believe the man upstairs dances to your tune PStupes.

    Look what happened to the Colorado Rockies, the bible-beaters beat by an godless blue state team!

    It didn’t come in Falwell’s time, it didn’t come in Hyde’s time and it won’t come in yours.

  29. 41

    Puddybud spews:

    YLB – The Clueless One (TM) Where is your call for her improved health? Oooooh that’s right yous a liberal, sympathy on the sick and downtrodden was ripped out of your liberal dictionary!!!

    Your nose is so far stuck up in the air someone needs to hold your hand to cross the street.

  30. 42

    headless lucy spews:

    PudWax™: How long are you going to kick yourself in the ass before you realize what you are doing to yourself.

    Self-righteous blindness is no substitute for being correct.

  31. 43

    YLB spews:

    May the God I serve bless the mother and child.

    Didn’t he already, PStupes? Isn’t this part of the plan? Or are you just handing out orders again?

    I’m getting bored again.

  32. 44

    YLB spews:

    this ABC News (Oops… vast wingnut ™ conspiracy) story:

    Oh what happened PStupes? The evil MSM reported this story? Why didn’t you read about it on some right wing bullshit site?

  33. 45

    Puddybud spews:

    Leadlice Loocie (TM): Where is your call for a long life to the lady?

    I forgot you being an idiot with a very large idiot gene in you DNA double spiral helix can’t say anything nice. And you blog on the company (Seattle Skuul District’s) dime.

  34. 46

    Puddybud spews:

    Leadlice Loocie ™: Self immolation is a liberal activity! Self-righteous blindness to what? You can’t find it within yourself to bless the lady for two things

    1) No abortion!
    2) She’s still alive!

    I realize donkoinfanticide is your power play so I know you are really pissed at this lady!

  35. 47

    Puddybud spews:

    YLB – The Clueless One (TM): You are a real idiot.

    Two days ago Leadlice Loocie (TM) said the wingnut MSM. I realize you, being reeeeeeeeeeeally stuuuuuuuuuuupid forgot this comment by him. So I am glad to clarify your faulty memory.

    When you buy a clue let all of us know you are playing in the same stadium!

  36. 48

    Puddybud spews:

    YLB – The Clueless One ™, yes God blesses even you. It says in the Good Book He blesses the unjust, so you too are getting a blessing. I said since you can’t process words, may she live to see her grandchildren.

    U R eeeeeeeeeeeally stuuuuuuuuuuupid!

  37. 49

    YLB spews:

    HL is correct, Stupes. A concentrated, corporate owned media gets skepticism from me. There’s a multitude of examples where it serves power instead of speaking truth to it. I’m thankful for the truth that squeaks through but it’s getting harder to find, day by day.

    Yet a paranoiac like you is programmed to trash it in total to serve your degenerate agenda. You trash truth (because it has a liberal bias) and you ignore the MSM when it props up your chimp in the White House (it just can’t be happening, according to you.)

    No end of entertainment from you Stupes – the radical feminist paranoia and the evil, MSM conspiracy.

    But again, I’ve seen it so much and it’s getting so predictable.

  38. 51

    Puddybud spews:

    Hey YLB – The Clueless One ™, how do you ‘splain the NOW gang totally quiet on the British teacher just jailed in the Sudan?

    Yes NOW has a liberal bias and it shows.

    I trash truth. Yeah, right!!!!

  39. 52

    Puddybud spews:

    YLB – The Clueless One ™ – What corp ownership issue? 85% of the MSM vote your way yr after yr.

  40. 53

    skagit spews:

    When the party chairman of the D party in WA state won’t hear or give voice to all challengers, there’s no chance. Hong Tran was our best chance at giving Cantwell some heat. It is a f***-up system.