We endorsed incumbent Democratic U.S. Rep. Rick Larsen in the primary, but we kept him off our initial No-Brainer list for the general because we wanted to give GOP challenger John Koster another  chance to answer our questions. (He had avoided us in the run-up to the primary.)

However, since then Koster has been even less accessible. And not just to PubliCola. Last week, at the last minute, Koster pulled out of a scheduled KCTS-9 debate, denying voters a real chance to compare the candidates.

Perhaps it's because Koster doesn't want to be asked the tough questions he's dodged throughout the campaign: Is he for George W. Bush's Social Security privatization plan? Does he support all the planks of the radical Tea Party platform that he signed? Why did he hire a virulent gay-marriage opponent, Larry Stickney (campaign manager for Protect Marriage Washington, which fought 2009's domestic-partnership initiative)? And why is he accepting illegal corporate contributions (a story we first reported)?

Given all this: We are now officially adding Rick Larsen to the list of PubliCola No-Brainer picks for Nov. 2.

Larsen is a moderate who leans left, getting high marks from pro-choice groups and the ACLU. Despite hailing from a swing district in the northwest corner of the state, Larsen has managed to go all in on key Democratic agenda items: Yea on the employee nondiscrimination act (companies can't fire employees for being gay), Wall Street reform, health care reform, and cap and trade. And despite his hawkish side, he voted to repeal the PATRIOT Act.

He’s also a go-to vote on campaign finance reform and transportation infrastructure.

Here's video of PubliCola's sit-down with Rep. Larsen.

Read more than 60 other PubliCola Picks here—including our initial list of 32 No Brainers. It's the most comprehensive set of endorsements in the state.