Incumbent legislators hold big financial advantage over challengers

Tuesday, November 3, 2020

Evan Smith

By Evan Smith

Incumbent Democratic state legislators in the 32nd and 46th legislative districts hold big financial advantages over their challengers in the November 3, 2020 general election.

Democratic 32nd District incumbent State Rep. Cindy Ryu is the leading fundraiser. She has reported raising $90,113 to go with $10,123 left from previous campaigns for a total war chest of $100,236. Ryu has reported campaign expenditures totaling $58,594.

Ryu’s general-election opponent, fellow Democrat Shirley Sutton, has raised $4,812 and lent her own campaign $200 for a total of $5,012. She has spent $464.

Ryu, who operates an insurance agency, has a contribution of $1,500 from the Washington Insurers Political Action Committee, $2,000 from the Farmers Employees and Agents PAC, $1,250 from the American Property Casualty Insurance Association Political Account and $1,000 each from the Zurich American Insurance Co., the Continental Casualty Co. and the Cigna Health and Life Insurance Co. and the United Services Automobile Association (USAA).

She also has contributions of $2,000 each from Connie Ballmer of Bellevue George Petrie of Seattle, the Puyallup Tribe of Indians, the Pacific Northwest Regional Council of Carpenters, Delta Dental Service of Washington, the Washington State Auto Dealers Political Action Committee (PAC), the Washington Education Association PAC (WEA PAC) and from the Justice for All PAC, a conservative political action committee, that usually spends a lot of money to try to influence judicial elections around the country; and $1,500 each from the Washington Federation of State Employees and the Washington Hospitality Association PAC.

Ryu has reported an in-kind contribution from the Washington State Democrats of $1,411.07; a cash contribution of $1,250 from Co-Ho Imports an Everett-based distributor of Asian sake, wine and spirits; and $1,000 contributions from six other companies, five industry groups, seven labor groups and five individuals.

Ryu is chairwoman of the State House committee on housing, community development and veterans; and a member of the Appropriations Committee and the committee on consumer protection and business.

The Fuse Votes organization has made an independent expenditure on Ryu’s behalf of $122. Fuse supports liberal candidates around Washington.

Sutton, a former Lynnwood City Council member, has $1,000 contributions from the Opportunity PAC, which supports to the campaigns of Black women, and from SEPAC, which bills itself as “Snohomish County’s leading authoritative resource informing the decisions of African Americans and underserved communities on electoral, legislative, political, and policy issues.”

The other 32nd District incumbent, Democratic State Rep. Lauren Davis reports raising $67,907 on top of a campaign starting balance of $24,764 for a total war chest of $92,671, with $68,947 spent. Davis has a $2,000 campaign debt. Her challenger, non-partisan candidate Tamra Smilanich, has not reported campaign fundraising or spending because she has registered with the state Public Disclosure Commission as a “mini-filer,” a status which excuses her from making periodic reports as long as she raises and spends less than $5,000.

Davis has $2,000 contributions from some of the same donors who are supporting Ryu: Connie Ballmer, the SEIU 775 Quality Care Committee, the Northwest Regional Council of Carpenters and the WEA PAC; and others from Tom Glaspie of Olympia, Centene Management, the Washington Medical PAC, the SEIU 775 Quality Care Committee, the Puyallup Tribe Of Indians, Delta Dental, and the Washington State Building and Construction Trades Council, and she has $1,500 contributions from the Washington Federation of State Employees, Premera Blue Cross and Justice For All.

Fuse Votes also has made an independent expenditure on Davis’ behalf of $122.

In the 46th District, incumbent Democratic State Rep. Javier Valdez is the leading fundraiser, with $70,019 raised and $48,988 spent. Republican challenger Beth Daranciang has raised $1,972 and spent $1,372.

Valdez has $2,000 contributions from Connie Ballmer, Puyallup Tribe Of Indians, Microsoft, BNSF Railway Co., Lyft Inc., the Puget Sound Pilots PAC, CHRIS Stolte of Seattle, the Washington State Council Of County And City Employees PAC,

The other Democratic 46th District, incumbent, State Rep. Gerry Pollet reports raising $48,189.50 and spending $28,470. Republican challenger Eric J. Brown has raised $4,947 and spent $5,843.

Pollet has $2,000 contributions from the Pacific NW Regional Council Of Carpenters, the SEIU 775 Quality Care Committee, the Puyallup Tribe Of Indians, the WEA PAC, the Tulalip Tribes, and Karl Quackenbush of Seattle.

The 32nd Legislative District includes Shoreline, Woodway, south Edmonds, the city of Lynnwood, a small part of Mountlake Terrace and part of northwest Seattle.

The 46th District includes Lake Forest Park, Kenmore and northeast Seattle.


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