Republicans running for state Senate have maintained strong primary leads in what many political analysts billed as competitive races. If primary results are any indication of the November election, the Senate Majority Coalition Caucus (MCC) will enjoy a 26-23 majority during the 2015 legislative cycle—Republicans would have a majority in their own right, with Democrat Sen. Tim Sheldon joining them in caucus.
The significance of a Republican-led state Senate cannot be underestimated. Washington State would continue being the only state on the West Coast with a Republican legislative body. Perhaps the most prominent effect being the ability to maintain enough of a foothold to “steer Washington’s environmental policy down the middle while Oregon and California veer left.” Great news for rational Washingtonians, terrible for far-left activists like billionaire Tom Steyer.
After promising to invest millions in targeted “swing” races to ensure that Washington State’s Senate turns blue, the primary election results certainly cannot be good for Steyer. A valid question that arises is whether or not Steyer will go through with his promise (or threat, depending on how you look at it) to influence our state Senate races. The Seattle Times,
“Here’s the trouble. Steyer may have the money and the inclination. But primary-election night results don’t indicate much chance of success. Money can do wonders in politics, but it would take quite a reversal to change control.
The narrowest head-to-head matchup in a key race appears to be Democrat Matt Isenhower’s Eastside challenge to Senate Ways and Means Committee Chairman Andy Hill, R-Redmond, in the 45th Legislative District. Hill is leading by a comfortable margin, 54 percent to 46 percent.
In the 28th District, in the south Tacoma suburbs, Republican incumbent Steve O’Ban was ahead of Democrat Tami Green, both of University Place, 56 percent to 44 percent. For Federal Way’s open 30th District seat, Republican Mark Miloscia was beating Democrat Shari Song, 57 percent to 43 percent. And that pickup would offset a likely Democratic gain in the 48th, where Majority Coalition Caucus Leader Rodney Tom, D-Medina, is stepping down and Democratic state Rep. Cyrus Habib has 63 percent of the vote so far.”
Sen. Tim Sheldon—the last remaining Democrat member of the MCC—officially came out of his primary in second today. Sheldon faced off against a Democrat and a Republican. With Republican Travis Coutoure conceding, it is safe to assume Sheldon will pick up the majority of the GOP votes, easily win in November, and give Republicans the extra cushion vote in the Senate.
Tell us what you think! Will Steyer follow through on his threat to target not-so-swing state Senate races? Or, will he invest elsewhere?