Brad Shannon has an article focusing on Denny Heck, the former legislator and founder of TVW. Heck is giving serious consideration to running for the seat to be vacated by Rep. Brian Baird, D- Wash. (WA-03), at the end of the term.
“I am doing a bunch to get myself ready so I can hit the ground running. Having said that, I have not pulled the trigger,’’ Heck said Wednesday. “This is a big, big, big decision and it bears serious deliberation. I’ve set a hard deadline of this weekend, and I will stick by that deadline” for deciding.
As Shannon notes, Heck has “fronted” $100,000 of his own money for a potential run.
The district certainly has the potential to be one of the top targets in the country, so large sums of money flowing into the district are a certainty. A candidate who can fund some of the expense himself is going to get attention. As to how much the race will cost, numbers like $3-$5 million per general election candidate seem likely. It’s great news for the companies that own Portland tee-vee and radio stations.
The announced big names on the Democratic side are state Rep. Deb Wallace, D-Vancouver (18th LD,) and state Sen. Craig Pridemore, D-Vancouver (49th LD.) Some other folks have made a little noise, including state Sen. Brian Hatfield, D-Raymond (19th LD,) and former state Sen. Mark Doumit, a Democrat from Cathlamet who now works for the Washington Forest Protection Association. While it pains me to say it, having once lived in Longview, the latter two would face an uphill climb in the district trying to get attention in Clark County with Pridemore and Wallace both from Clark. Olympia activist Cheryl Crist, who received just shy of 13% in the 2008 top-two primary, has also declared she is in the race for 2010.
If Heck gets in, there would be at least four Democrats running, three of them with a decent chance of moving through to the general. Heck justifiably seems to have a lot of people who admire him, and has more recently spent time in the private sector. Personally I think he’d also have an uphill climb against two sitting Legislators who currently reside in Clark County, but I’m biased. (As I’ve stated from the outset, I am supporting Pridemore.) Then again, money talks, as they say.
On the Republican side, so far you have state Rep. Jaime Herrera, R-Ridgefield (18th LD,) former Bush administration official and current private sector financial adviser David Castillo of the Olympia area, Washougal city council member Jon Russell and yelling Marine guy David Hedrick. While Herrera, a former staffer for U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers, R-Wash. (WA-05,) was parachuted in to take the 18th LD state House seat vacated after the Richard Curtis sex scandal, she’s only in her first full term and is pretty young by political standards at 31.
Castillo seems to bring a serious campaign style, and good communication skills, and I wouldn’t discount him.
Russell failed to get the endorsement of evangelical leader Joe Fuiten, who went with Castillo, even though Russell is a Faith and Freedom guy. Hedrick is, well, Hedrick.
So, at this point, if the Democratic field turns out to be:
And the Republicans wind up being:
I think I would like our chances a lot.