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We endorse: Stokesbary, Robertson a good fit for Legislative District 31 (2020)

The Tacoma News Tribune has endorsed me and Eric Robertson for election this year!

Here’s a few highlights of their editorial:

For the past four years, youth has been served in Washington’s 31st Legislative District — and so have the people of the trans-county Pierce-King suburban commuter corridor. They’ve been fortunate to see a pair of politicians in their early 30s make an impact in Olympia.

Reps. Drew Stokesbary of Auburn and Morgan Irwin of Enumclaw are typical of millenial-age family men in their district, tending to careers, raising kids and juggling other domestic demands. Add to that the atypical pressure of serving in the House, accepting caucus leadership assignments and running for election every two years.

They signified a bright future . . . Stokesbary still does. The 35-year-old attorney and chief budget writer for House Republicans is running for a fourth term. By far the strongest candidate in his primary election contest, he earns our unreserved endorsement.

Irwin, however, decided not to run again. In his place, we endorse Eric Robertson, a retired Washington State Patrol trooper and former two-term Republican House member.

For House Position 1, Stokesbary has excelled in his role promoting cautious state budgets for the minority party. He’s also a respectful foil for Gov. Jay Inslee and legislative Democrats; he praised the governor for vetoing $445 million in new spending early in the COVID-19 shutdown but has called on him to do more, such as suspending union employee 3-percent pay raises.

Stokesbary’s opponents in the Aug. 4 primary . . . are too raw to join the Legislature during a simultaneous state budget trainwreck and public health emergency; this is their first run for office and they could use training at the local level.

No such training is needed for Eric Robertson, our pick for House Position 2. A lifelong resident of the 31st and fourth-generation Buckley native, Robertson served as caucus chairman in the late ‘90s, the third-ranking Republican in the House.

He voted to cut taxes on small businesses, sponsored drunk-driving legislation that got tougher on repeat offenders and fought turning State Route 18 into a toll road. His moderate reputation was borne out by broad support from business, labor and civic groups — support that continues in his current campaign.

In our view, Drew Stokesbary and Eric Robertson would be an effective new tandem in District 31.

You can read the entire article at

I was also endorsed by the region’s other daily newspaper, The Seattle Times.

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