Democrat and Independent voters in Federal Way have become a hot commodity! And if you’re a Republican voter, you are likely to start drawing more attention soon, as well.
As one of the biggest and most diverse cities in the state, with a fast-growing population that will continue to move us up the growth charts, we have suddenly become very popular with several big name Democrat politicians who have future political plans. Plus Democrats want to keep the blue label from last election on Federal Way to retain control of the state House. But, as a swing area, Republicans will be putting us on their “must visit” list, as well. Their statewide candidates are still in the early stages of planning, but they also want to return the two House seats to the red column.
Three of the most well-known politicians in the state have been here recently and will be back.
Gov. Jay Inslee was here last week for the second time in two months. He was joined by Attorney General Bob Ferguson at City Hall, along with a packed house of legislators, volunteers and professional staff. Inslee signed several pieces of legislation into law regarding sexual assault.
Inslee was also here about a month ago to tour Nautilus K-8 and came away so impressed with our students, Superintendent Tammy Campbell and our school board that he was still talking about them last week. He had also met with Greater Federal Way Chamber of Commerce CEO Becca Martin about business issues in his last visit. Most speculation has been that King County Executive Dow Constantine and Ferguson would be the two Democrat candidates for governor in 2020, but Inslee doesn’t look like he is planning on retiring anytime soon.
Constantine is up for election this year as county executive, and, so far, no big name is showing any interest in taking him on. He was here recently for a local candidate fundraiser.
Ferguson’s profile has taken a huge upswing with his being named by Time Magazine as one of the “Most Influential People” after his successful defeat of President Trump’s immigration plan. Like Inslee, Ferguson was here a couple of months ago. Both spent time with Mirror staff and the editorial board.
In addition to speculation about running for governor, there is some thought that if a vacancy in the United States Senate were to occur, Ferguson could be interested in that, as well.
One well-regarded Republican candidate, Secretary of State Kim Wyman was here just a few months ago successfully campaigning for re-election. She is dealing with some health issues, but watch to see her schedule next spring. Another possible future Republican candidate, Pierce County Executive Bruce Dammeier was in the area giving a breakfast speech to a group of Federal Way and Auburn community leaders. It may be too early for the newly elected county executive to be thinking about higher office, but recall your political history and remember that Booth Gardner was elected governor after one term as Pierce County executive.
The signing ceremony at Federal Way City Hall included legislation supported by Ferguson and 30th District State Rep. Mike Pellicciotti, D-Federal Way, along with several other state legislators. Also in attendance was 30th District State Sen. Mark Miloscia, R-Federal Way, who has run for state auditor twice. After some ill-timed comments earlier this year about protesters at the women’s march in Seattle, Miloscia’s support for the assault legislation was a smart move. Could Miloscia be planning another statewide race or just being careful as he is up for election next year?
Another local legislator who was here supporting the assault legislation was State Sen. Joe Fain, R-Auburn. Fain is well known in Federal Way and a frequent attendee at local events. Many want Fain to consider higher office, but so far he is keeping his options open.
Inslee, Ferguson, Constantine. Wyman, Dammeier, Fain, Miloscia.
Enjoy the attention, Federal Way.
Federal Way resident Bob Roegner is a former Auburn mayor and retired public official. He can be reached at email@example.com.