NPI's Cascadia Advocate

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

Tuesday, May 2nd, 2023

Attorney General Bob Ferguson announces candidacy for Governor of Washington State

With Gov­er­nor Jay Inslee hav­ing announced yes­ter­day that he won’t be seek­ing a fourth term in the state’s top posi­tion of pub­lic respon­si­bil­i­ty, Attor­ney Gen­er­al Bob Fer­gu­son has wast­ed no time in jump­ing into the race, mak­ing his can­di­da­cy offi­cial with a PDC fil­ing, cam­paign web­site, launch video, and press statement.

“I have nev­er been afraid to take on big chal­lenges, and I’ve nev­er for­got­ten who I’m fight­ing for,” Fer­gu­son said in a state­ment. “I look for­ward to lis­ten­ing and learn­ing from Wash­ing­to­ni­ans in every coun­ty and cor­ner of this great state.”

Fer­gu­son says he con­sid­ers his cam­paign to be in the “explorato­ry” phase right now, imply­ing that he intends to put togeth­er a launch event of some sort in the weeks to come. While “explorato­ry” has a legal mean­ing attached to it for fed­er­al can­di­dates, at the state lev­el, it does­n’t. You’re either a can­di­date or you’re not — and Fer­gu­son is a declared can­di­date for Gov­er­nor, the first cred­i­ble can­di­date on the Demo­c­ra­t­ic side to offi­cial­ly toss his hat into the ring.

Dur­ing this explorato­ry phase, Fer­gu­son says he will:

Pur­sue these goals

  • Vis­it every cor­ner of the state;
  • Earn 5,000 grass­roots con­tri­bu­tions from Wash­ing­to­ni­ans in all 39 counties;
  • Earn 200 endorse­ments from elect­ed officials.

Statewide Lis­ten­ing Tour

Fer­gu­son will begin his lis­ten­ing tour this month with a trip to East­ern Wash­ing­ton. The lis­ten­ing tour will include pub­lic appear­ances, house par­ties, meet­ings with trib­al gov­ern­ments, busi­ness lead­ers, and elect­ed officials.

Fer­gu­son vis­it­ed every Wash­ing­ton coun­ty as a can­di­date for Attor­ney Gen­er­al, and vis­it­ed every coun­ty again dur­ing his first term. As Attor­ney Gen­er­al Fer­gu­son also vis­it­ed every Rotary club in the state – approx­i­mate­ly 200 clubs across 103 dif­fer­ent Wash­ing­ton cities.

Fer­gu­son is already most of the way towards his third goal, at least if he’s count­ing what he’s start­ing with. He unveiled a long list of ear­ly endorsers, includ­ing five Demo­c­ra­t­ic mem­bers of the state’s con­gres­sion­al del­e­ga­tion: Suzan Del­Bene, Prami­la Jaya­pal, Derek Kilmer, Rick Larsen, and Adam Smith and Trea­sur­er Mike Pel­lic­ciot­ti from the exec­u­tive depart­ment. A huge num­ber of state leg­is­la­tors are also behind Fer­gu­son, includ­ing Sen­ate Major­i­ty Leader Andy Billig.

Here’s Fer­gu­son’s launch video:

Demo­c­ra­t­ic Com­mis­sion­er of Pub­lic Lands Hilary Franz is expect­ed to join Fer­gu­son in the con­test soon, per­haps with­in days. King Coun­ty Exec­u­tive Dow Con­stan­tine took him­self out of the run­ning sev­er­al weeks ago, announc­ing his focus will be on his cur­rent job run­ning the state’s largest locality.

On the Repub­li­can side, ultra MAGA Repub­li­can Semi Bird is run­ning, hav­ing already raised over $50,000. Yaki­ma doc­tor Raul Gar­cia, State Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Jim Walsh, and State Sen­a­tor John Braun have been men­tioned as pos­si­ble can­di­dates. Repub­li­can Bruce Dammeier, the term-lim­it­ed Pierce Coun­ty Exec­u­tive, has said he has no inter­est in run­ning for Governor.

Dammeier and Con­stan­tine were part of a hypo­thet­i­cal guber­na­to­r­i­al field we polled on about two months ago in our win­ter statewide sur­vey. Dammeier was the only Repub­li­can in the poll and received 35%, which is the same as what Jaime Her­rera Beut­ler got in a the­o­ret­i­cal matchup against Maria Cantwell and what we believe in any Repub­li­can could get in a head-to-head contest.

Con­stan­tine got 7%, tying with Hilary Franz and trail­ing Fer­gu­son, who got 21%.

We will be polling the guber­na­to­r­i­al race again next month, and this time, we’ll have an actu­al field to ask vot­ers about rather than a hypo­thet­i­cal one.

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  1. […] will be com­pet­ing with fel­low statewide office­hold­er Attor­ney Gen­er­al Bob Fer­gu­son to suc­ceed cur­rent Gov­er­nor Jay Inslee, who announced last week he’ll leave office when […]

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