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Postman on Politics

Chief political reporter David Postman explores state, regional and national politics.

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April 8, 2008 8:21 AM

A magazine ranking the governor won't be touting

Posted by David Postman

Dan Savage points us to this in Popular Mechanics.

After an earthquake in 2001 damaged the Alaskan Way Viaduct, a traffic artery in Seattle, inspectors found that some supports had subsided 5 in., weakening the structure. Options included fixing the elevated roadway and replacing it with a tunnel or improved surface roads. There’s still no decision. Meanwhile, as many as 110,000 vehicles travel on the compromised structure each day.

The viaduct is No. 5 on the magazine's list of “The 10 Pieces of U.S. Infrastructure We Must Fix Now."

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April 8, 2008 7:42 AM

Dems to nominate candidates at conventions

Posted by David Postman

State Democrats say they will hold a series of nominating conventions to anoint their chosen candidates for the August primary. That’s the party’s attempt to have its members pick candidates after the U.S. Supreme Court decision that authorized the state to hold its first “top-two” primary.

Under the new state primary, the top two vote getters advance to the general election, regardless of their party identification. In Seattle, that would likely mean two Democrats facing off in some legislative races in November.

Secretary of State Sam Reed has said the Democratic and Republican parties cannot designate a chosen candidate on the primary ballot, even if they hold nominating conventions. But the party-backed candidates can list that in the voter’s pamphlet.

In May Democrats will hold legislative district, county and congressional district nominating conventions. Statewide candidates will be nominated at the state convention in June. According to the Democratic Party:

The votes at these Conventions shall be cast by elected and appointed Precinct Committee Officers (PCOs). Each Nominating Convention will nominate one Democrat for each partisan office, by majority vote. This is not an endorsement meeting, there is no two-thirds rule, and there will be no dual nominations.

At The Olympian, Brad Shannon had the scoop on the Democrats’ plans in yesterday’s paper. He said not all Democrats are happy with the new role for precinct committee officers.

That's because party rules require that local precinct officers must take sides — which means Thurston County's PCOs must favor either Sandra Romero or Jon Halvorson in the county commissioner race, for example.

The two Democrats are facing off for the seat Commissioner Diane Oberquell is vacating after two decades; Republican Rob Edmondson and Independent Jackie Joe Reid also are running.

"I think it makes it more difficult. It makes our party potentially more divided," Thurston Democratic Chairman John Cusick said of the requirement to pick a candidate. "We have great support for both candidates; different people support the candidate of their choice."

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Apr 8, 08 - 08:21 AM
A magazine ranking the governor won't be touting

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