Offering asides, recommended links, blogworthy quotations, and more, In Brief is the Northwest Progressive Institute's microblog of world, national, and local politics.

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Just another sunset in the beautiful Pacific Northwest

Just another sunset in the beautiful Pacific Northwest

Aside

Right wing Liberals remain short of a majority in British Columbia after more ballots counted

A provincial election update:

The NDP have jumped into a 101-vote lead over the Liberals in the battle for Courtenay-Comox, a riding that could decide which party governs British Columbia.

The final count of absentee ballots continues today, but as of the last update Tuesday afternoon, the NDP’s Ronna-Rae Leonard was leading Liberal candidate Jim Benninger 10,481 votes to 10,380.

Officials have counted slightly more than half the 2,077 absentee ballots in the riding.

The outcome of the race has the potential to alter the province’s political landscape.

A Liberal victory would give the party 44 seats and a bare majority in the 87-seat legislature. The NDP would finish with 40 and the B.C. Green Party with three.

As a reminder, the NDP, or New Democratic Party, is the main progressive party in British Columbia, while the Liberals are the main right wing party. The Greens are a minor party that are on the rise, having only won their first riding (what Canadians call a district) in 2013. The Greens have now tripled their numbers and will decide which of the major parties governs the province if these results hold.

There are still some absentee ballots left to count.

Progressive activists aren’t waiting for final numbers to call for a coalition government between the New Democratic Party and the Greens.

With the final election results still unclear, the calls for co-operation remain speculative but a reminder to both the Greens and the NDP that many of their supporters see them as natural allies.

“If no party has a strong majority after the final ballots are counted, the NDP and the Greens have a historic opportunity to make good on the important policies they both campaigned on – but only if they work together,” said Lyndsay Poaps, executive director of Leadnow, the umbrella organization that delivered a petition with 25,000 names calling for an alliance between the two parties.

NDP leader John Horgan and Green leader Andrew Weaver aren’t the best of friends, but they will need to put their personal differences aside if the Liberals are to be dislodged after having held power for fifteen years.

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New locomotives mean new service: Amtrak Cascades is expanding, and there's nothing Tim Eyman can do to stop it

New locomotives mean new service: Amtrak Cascades is expanding, and there's nothing Tim Eyman can do to stop it

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Fisheye view of a brand new Siemens Charger locomotive manufactured for use on Amtrak's Cascades route, which is funded by Washington and Oregon taxpayers

Fisheye view of a brand new Siemens Charger locomotive manufactured for use on Amtrak's Cascades route, which is funded by Washington and Oregon taxpayers

Video Clip

Donald Trump (Alec Baldwin), Kellyanne Conway (Kate McKinnon), Mike Pence (Beck Bennett), Eric Trump (Alex Moffat), Donald Trump Jr. (Mikey Day), Sarah Huckabee Sanders (Aidy Bryant), Melania Trump (Cecily Strong) and Ivanka Trump (Scarlett Johansson) perform “Hallelujah.”

Weekend Update anchors Colin Jost and Michael Che tackle the week’s biggest news, including President Donald Trump asking James Comey when he would announce Trump is not under investigation.

Dawn Lazarus (Vanessa Bayer) stops by with the weather.

Drunk Uncle (Bobby Moynihan) weighs in on Donald Trump’s presidency.

Four seniors (Beck Bennett, Kyle Mooney, Bobby Moynihan, Vanessa Bayer) bid goodbye to high school with a performance.

See all the sketches from this weekend’s episode of Saturday Night Live, the fourth episode of SNL to air live coast-to-coast.

Quotation

I just fired the head of the FBI. He was crazy, a real nutjob… I faced great pressure because of Russia. That’s taken off… I’m not under investigation.

— Donald Trump told visiting Russians that firing ‘nut job’ Comey eased pressure from investigation (The New York Times).

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Snapshot of a drawing showing where the Southeast Redmond light rail station will go

Snapshot of a drawing showing where the Southeast Redmond light rail station will go

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Redmond wants light rail: Sound Transit had excellent turnout for its latest Link design open house

Redmond wants light rail: Sound Transit had excellent turnout for its latest Link design open house

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Speakers at today's Filing Week luncheon: Tina Podlodowski, Dow Constantine, Tom Perez, Manka Dhingra

Speakers at today's Filing Week luncheon: Tina Podlodowski, Dow Constantine, Tom Perez, Manka Dhingra

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President Jimmy Carter pays a surprise visit to Dow Constantine's annual Filing Week luncheon prior to meeting with Manka Dhingra

President Jimmy Carter pays a surprise visit to Dow Constantine's annual Filing Week luncheon prior to meeting with Manka Dhingra

Recommended Link

Where anti-tax fervor means ‘all services will cease’

Southwestern Oregon’s public services are rotting away or shutting down due to voter unwillingness to pay dues to keep them running. The New York Times looks at the collapse of the commons in an often-ignored area of the Pacific Northwest.

Recommended Link

Trump revealed highly classified information to Russian foreign minister and ambassador

An exclusive from The Washington Post: “The president’s disclosures to the Russian foreign minister and ambassador in their Oval Office meeting last week jeopardized a critical source of intelligence on the Islamic State — an information-sharing arrangement considered so sensitive that details have been withheld from allies and tightly restricted even within the U.S. government, current and former U.S. officials said. “

Recommended Link

World’s first light rail on a floating bridge: For I-90, Sound Transit had to invent ‘a brilliant solution’

“Sound Transit’s consultants have invented a flexing track connection, using earthquake science, to safely move future light-rail trains on the I‑90 floating bridge,” reports The Seattle Times’ Mike Lindblom.

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Happy Mother's Day from NPI!

Happy Mother's Day from NPI!

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Sean Spicer (Melissa McCarthy) confronts Donald Trump (Alec Baldwin) about the rumors that he’s being replaced by Sarah Huckabee Sanders (Aidy Bryant).

Donald Trump (Alec Baldwin) discusses firing FBI director James Comey in an interview with Lester Holt (Michael Che).

Weekend Update anchors Colin Jost and Michael Che tackle the week’s biggest news, including President Donald Trump firing FBI director James Comey. Pete Davidson stops by to discuss getting sober.

See all the sketches from this weekend’s episode of Saturday Night Live, the third episode of SNL to air live coast-to-coast.

Recommended Link

Sinclair requires TV stations, including KOMO, to air segments that tilt to the right

A must-read from The New York Times. “Eight current and former KOMO employees describe a newsroom where some have chafed at Sinclair’s programming directives, especially must-runs pieces, which they view as too politically tilted and occasionally of poor quality.”

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Flanked by fishermen, Senator Cantwell blasts the Trump regime's scheme to grease the skids for a new Pebble Bay mine

Flanked by fishermen, Senator Cantwell blasts the Trump regime's scheme to grease the skids for a new Pebble Bay mine

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Speakers at the Downtown Redmond Park groundbreaking: Nancy McCormick, John Marchione, Joan McBride, Molly Hill

Speakers at the Downtown Redmond Park groundbreaking: Nancy McCormick, John Marchione, Joan McBride, Molly Hill

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Groundbreaking for the Downtown Redmond Park

Groundbreaking for the Downtown Redmond Park

Video Clip

“Jimmy returns from his time off after his newborn son Billy had heart surgery and he talks about the outpouring of love and support he has received, the not-so-nice things some people have said, and he speaks with Louisiana’s Republican Senator Bill Cassidy about the health care debate.”

Quotation

If the Legislature is not prepared to create a carbon tax that is scaled to meet the challenges we face, it will be up to the citizenry to live up to our great state’s rich heritage of environmental leadership and take decisive action to address climate change.

— Fawn Sharp and Matthew Randazzo V: Don’t bolster education funding by selling out our environment