We decided to issue an early batch of “No-Brainer” endorsements (a week before ballots drop) to get the easy ones out of the way.
Here's our list of obvious picks for Nov. 2, including a few Republicans:
State House Rep., District 2, Position 2
PubliCola picks Tom Campbell
Incumbent Republican Rep. Tom Campbell is a moderate who chairs the health and environment committee (even though the Democrats are in the majority). He's solid on the environment—particularly when it comes to regulating toxics.
State House Rep., District 3, Position 2
PubliCola Picks Timm Ormsby
Incumbent Democratic Rep. Ormsby, a rising star on the left, will be key next year in pushing hazardous substance tax legislation, a bill he championed last session.
State Rep., District 6, Position 2
PubliCola picks John Driscoll
This one is all about incumbent Democrat Drisccoll's wild-eyed opponent, John Ahern, who's obsessed with opposing environmental regulations and thinks sustainability is a U.N. plot.
State Rep., District 11, Position 1
PubliCola picks Zack Hudgins
Hudgins is a little too lockstep with cautious state House speaker Frank Chopp for our tastes (example: He voted for the dreaded tunnel cost overruns position), but....
State Rep., District 11, Position 2
PubliCola picks Bob Hasegawa
... Hasegawa is a little too knee-jerk lefty for our tastes, so we'll split the difference here and go with both 11th District seat mates.
State Rep., District 21, Position 2
PubliCola picks Marko Liias
Coming off an all-star session fighting for transit dollars, Liias is poised to emerge as a leader for the next generation of Democrats.
State Rep., Distirct 25, Position 2
PubliCola picks Dawn Morrell
This is another endorsement that's all about being terrified by the other candidate. In this case, Hans Zeiger. Oh my God.
State House Rep., District 28, Position 2
PubliCola picks Tami Green
Tacoma Democrat Green is the head of the house's ad hoc labor and environmentalist caucus (the de facto progressive caucus). The alliance fought to save critical programs in this year's slash-and-burn budget under Green's leadership.
State House Rep., 31st District, Position 1
PubliCola picks Cathy Dahlquist
Republican Cathy Dahlquist, running for an open seat, will be a leader on education reform.
State Senate, 32nd District
PubliCola picks Maralyn Chase
Rep. Maralyn Chase is an adamant liberal who will bring some demand-side economics to the stodgy Senate Democratic caucus.
State Senate, District 33
PubliCola picks Karen Keiser
Incumbent Democratic Sen. Karen Keiser is the Democrats' lead on health care reform.
State Senate, 36th District
PubliCola picks Jeanne Kohl-Welles
Not only is incumbent Democratic Sen. Kohl-Welles a champion for women's rights, consumer protection (particularly on regulating pharmaceutical companies), she was a leader last sessions on the trying, but urgent need to raise taxes.
State Rep. 36th District, Position 1
PubliCola picks Reuven Carlyle
Incumbent Democrat Reuven Carlyle is killer on education reform and is working to bring small businesses into the Democratic tent.
State Rep. 36th District, Position 2
Mary Lou Dickerson
Yay pot reform.
State Senate, 37th District
PubliCola Picks Adam Kline
Adam Kline focuses on civil rights, particularly when it comes to watchdogging the criminal justice system.
State Rep., 37th District, Position 2
PubliCola picks Eric Pettigrew
South Seattle incumbent Democrat Eric Pettigrew is one of the most respected legislators in Olympia---a good thing for the Seattle delegation.
State Senate, District 38
PubliCola picks Nick Harper
Nick Harper, an insurgent from the left who beat disappointing Democratic incumbent Sen. Jean Berkey (who supported tax loopholes for big banks), will give more power to the progressive wing of the Democratic party.
State Rep., District 44, Position 1
PubliCola picks Hans Dunshee
Dunshee is an all-star environmentalist who saved the day last year by making good on the Democrats' promise of actually turning the recession and pending environmental doom into an FDR-style opportunity: He queued up one of the only jobs packages—retrofitting schools—this session.
State Rep., 47th District, Position 2
PubliCola picks Pat Sullivan
A measured Democrat who's respected on both sides of the aisle and a leader on education reform.
A handful of Seattle legislators (and one first-time candidate) are running unopposed, but would be "No Brainers" even if they had opponents.
PubliCola picks: State Rep. Reuven Carlyle (see above); State Sen. Ed Murray (a standout gay rights advocate and fiscal moderate); State Rep. Scott White (a behind-the-scenes worker bee who gets it done for Seattle and, by the way, didn't vote for the overruns provision like many of his colleagues); and House candidate Dave Frockt, a flaming liberal who was motivated to run because he thinks the Democratic majority in Olympia was falling down on the job).
State Rep. Jamie Pedersen is also running unopposed.
State Initiative 1053
PubliCola picks "No"
The latest Tim Eyman initiative would restore a requirement that the legislature needs a two-thirds majority to approve tax increases (this, by the way, can also mean you need a two-thirds majority to close corporate tax loopholes).
The extremist rule gives a minority the power to muck up the democratic process. (Would the proponents of I-1053 want this initiative to need two-thirds voter approval at the ballot in order to pass?)
Think PubliCola is a bunch of crazy liberals—in the best election season editorial we've read all year, the Olympian thinks voting against this Eyman disaster is a No Brainer too.
U.S. Rep., Congressional District 1
PubliCola picks U.S. Rep. Jay Inslee
We stand by our fawning primary endorsement. Inslee is an outstanding congressman.
U.S. Rep, Congressional District 7
PubliCola picks U.S. Rep. Jim McDermott
We also stand by our primary election endorsement of McDermott.
U.S. Rep., Congressional District 6
U.S. Rep. Norm Dicks
And here are few more, that, while still No Brainers, deserved longer write ups. (Click on the links to read full endorsement.)
PubliCola picks Patty Murray for U.S. Senate
PubliCola picks Charlie Wiggins for state Suprmeme Court.
PubliCola picks Joe Fitzgibbon for 34th District State Rep., Position 2.
PubliCola picks Approve state measure R-52.
PubliCpola picks Yes on King County Prop. 1.