Senator Cantwell’s Opponent in 2012
Posted by Warren Peterson on December 12, 2010
Republicans just missed taking out Patty Murray this year. One person calculated that if Rossi had just five percentage points more in King County, he would be the 47th Republican senator come January 2011. Blue King County will no doubt play a pivotal role in Maria Cantwell’s 2012 re-election campaign too. It is not too early to identify potential Republicans who could hold down the Democrat vote in King County and appeal to voters across the state. Nor is it really too early to coalesce around one Republican candidate. There is money to be raised, endorsements to nail down, appearances to be made outside King County and less than nineteen months until the 2012 primary.
Who are possible U. S. Senate winners for the GOP in 2012? First some criteria, as a practical matter, to defeat Cantwell, Republicans need to find a female King County resident with a political base, preferably an elected official. There are great women candidates outside King County like Cathy McMorris-Rodgers, but she would face the Curse of Eastern Washington trying to run statewide. Plus, she is a rising star in the House and from a safe Republican district so why take the risk? There are also some males with statewide campaign experience but except for Rossi, the main ones from the 2010 primary did not receive anything approaching a significant vote. None of them, including Rossi, would stand a chance against Cantwell.
Among the women potentials:
Diane Tebelius – She received forty six percent of the vote in a tough 48th District race for the State House of Representatives against an incumbent Democrat. Battle hardened; she deserves consideration.
King County Sheriff Sue Rahr – Don’t know where she falls on the Conservative – Liberal continuum and being the second Sheriff to seek national office could be a sales problem.
King County Councilmember Jane Hague – A prodigious fundraiser and vote getter, she’d meet the criteria but her handling of a DUI arrest probably killed her electability statewide. She barely survived re-election to her council seat in 2007.
King County Councilwoman Kathy Lambert – Maybe the best of the lot when it comes to wining a senate seat in 2012. She has the base, the energy and is just moderate enough to appeal to the all-important independents.
There may be other good candidates out there but if they or one of the above women don’t decide soon to take on Maria, who knows what foolishness could result from Washington’s Top Two Primary? Imagine a Cantwell versus Pam Roach race, a little scary eh?