NPI's Cascadia Advocate

Offering commentary and analysis from Washington, Oregon, and Idaho, The Cascadia Advocate provides the Northwest Progressive Institute's uplifting perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Tuesday, June 28th, 2011

Sam Reed confirms retirement; Jay Manning resigns; catching up with Lt. Gov Brad Owen

Con­firm­ing reports that he will not run again in 2012, Wash­ing­ton Sec­re­tary of State Sam Reed told reporters and his staff this morn­ing that his next eigh­teen months in office will be his last — though he will remain involved in politics.

“This is a bit­ter­sweet deci­sion for me and my fam­i­ly,” Reed said in a statement.

“I have such love and respect for this office and for the oppor­tu­ni­ties to serve the peo­ple of Wash­ing­ton every sin­gle day. I came to Olympia as a young man to answer a call for a new breed of lead­ers, and was hon­ored to work for Gov­er­nor Dan Evans and to be appoint­ed assis­tant sec­re­tary of state by Sec­re­tary Lud Kramer at age 28.  Lat­er, I thor­ough­ly enjoyed being Thurston Coun­ty Audi­tor for 23 years and now have had the dis­tinct plea­sure of being Sec­re­tary of State for three terms, includ­ing pre­sid­ing over the nation’s sec­re­taries of state.”

He added, “In all, it has been quite a ride – forty-five years in pub­lic life, includ­ing thir­ty-five in elec­tive office. It is true, there is ‘a time and a sea­son’ and for Margie and me, it is time to move on at the end of the term.”

In a mes­sage to staff, Reed sum­ma­rized many of the things he has advo­cat­ed for as Sec­re­tary of State — for instance, mov­ing to vote-by-mail elec­tions, ask­ing courts to pre­serve access to the names of peo­ple who have signed bal­lot peti­tions under Wash­ing­ton’s pub­lic records act, and, of course, the “Top Two” win­now­ing elec­tion, which we at NPI believes vio­lates polit­i­cal par­ties’ First Amend­ment right to free assem­bly and is there­fore unconstitutional.’

State Sen­a­tor Jim Kas­ta­ma (a Demo­c­rat) and Thurston Coun­ty Audi­tor Kim Wyman (a Repub­li­can) are said to be con­sid­er­ing run­ning for Sec­re­tary of State, and may launch their cam­paigns soon.

Mean­while, in anoth­er sign that the 2011 leg­isla­tive ses­sion has tak­en its toll on Chris Gre­goire’s admin­is­tra­tion, the gov­er­nor’s chief of staff, Jay Man­ning, revealed today that he is leav­ing to pur­sue oth­er oppor­tu­ni­ties. His last day will be Fri­day, July 15th.

“There are a num­ber of rea­sons why I have decid­ed to resign,” Man­ning said in an email to col­leagues. “I have a num­ber of inter­est­ing pro­fes­sion­al oppor­tu­ni­ties that I want to pur­sue. There are some real finan­cial pres­sures that I need to attend to. I’m a lit­tle worn out and am not con­fi­dent that I would bring the lev­el of ener­gy and cre­ativ­i­ty that is nec­es­sary to do the Chief of Staff job at the lev­el I believe nec­es­sary to be successful.”

“I am not leav­ing because of the Governor’s deci­sion not to fun for a third term,” he explained. ” To the con­trary, her deci­sion will enable the admin­is­tra­tion to do more – to accom­plish more – in these next 18 months than it could if she were run­ning for a third term. I ful­ly sup­port the Governor’s deci­sion. I am also not leav­ing to run for elec­tive office. I have no plans to run for any­thing in 2012.”

Gre­goire has not announced a replace­ment for Man­ning, but she will need to find a new chief of staff quick­ly, since Man­ning is tak­ing off in mid-July.

Final­ly, it’s been brought to my atten­tion that Lieu­tenant Gov­er­nor Brad Owen is, in fact, plan­ning to ask vot­ers for anoth­er term in office (I char­ac­ter­ized his plans as unknown in my post yes­ter­day). He has already filed paper­work for his reelec­tion bid with the Pub­lic Dis­clo­sure Commission.

First elect­ed in 1996, Owen served along­side Gary Locke for both of his two terms and will have served with Chris Gre­goire for both of hers at the end of 2012. How­ev­er, he has a ways to go before he becomes the longest-serv­ing Lieu­tenant Gov­er­nor in state his­to­ry. That record is held by John Cher­berg (for whom the Sen­ate office build­ing is named).

Cher­berg served for thir­ty-two years, or eight terms. Albert Roselli­ni was gov­er­nor when he took office; Booth Gard­ner was gov­er­nor when he left office.

Unlike many oth­er states, can­di­dates for gov­er­nor and lieu­tenant gov­er­nor in Wash­ing­ton do not run togeth­er on a tick­et, mean­ing that indi­vid­u­als from dif­fer­ent par­ties can simul­ta­ne­ous­ly hold the dif­fer­ent offices.

Con­se­quent­ly, Owen’s prospects are not tied to those of Jay Inslee, the like­ly Demo­c­ra­t­ic stan­dard-bear­er for gov­er­nor. As in past cycles, Owen is cer­tain to have oppo­si­tion in 2012, but very unlike­ly to have any­thing more than token opposition.

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One Comment

  1. I real­ly think that Lt. Gov­er­nor is a use­less posi­tion. When has an Lt Gov­er­nor ever advanced to hold the posi­tion? Prob­a­bly never.
    When Dow was elect­ed to be KC Exec., he appoint­ed Fred Jar­rett to be his chief Of Staff. If Dow leaves the posi­tion, Jar­rett will be well posi­tioned to car­ry on the duties.
    If the state would have the “Chief Of Staff” replace the Gov, it would allow some­one who has a sim­i­lar vision to the sit­ting gov­er­nor as well as some­one from the same par­ty. It would also put a work­ing per­son as next in the line of succession.

    # by Mike Barer :: July 1st, 2011 at 11:38 PM
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