MESSAGE FROM THE CHAIR
Hello Democrats and Happy New Year!
We’re so excited to get to work and make sure terrific Democrats can win up and down the ticket throughout the 2023/24 campaign cycle! Thank you for standing with us and working hard every step of the way.
I want to start today’s letter with a message of sincere congratulations for several of our terrific WA State Democratic leaders!
First, please join me in congratulating Senator Patty Murray on her well-deserved appointment as the first female Senate President Pro Tempore! The president pro tempore ranks second under the president of the Senate — the vice president — and presides over the floor in the vice president’s absence. Notably, this puts her third in the line of presidential succession. We are so proud of Sen. Murray’s continued leadership both here at home and in the other Washington!
Second, let’s wish Congresswoman Suzan DelBene a hearty congratulations on her election as Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) Chair for the 2023/24 election cycle! In the last decade, Rep. DelBene won a tough seat as a Red-to-Blue candidate, held a tough seat as a Frontline candidate and then put that tough seat out of reach for the GOP. Suzan has also recently served in key DCCC leadership roles, including as Finance Co-Chair in 2018 when we successfully reclaimed the House Majority and Frontline Co-Chair in 2020 when we successfully defended it. There’s no one else more deserving of this role and we’re thrilled to see what she’ll accomplish!
I also want to give shoutouts to Congressman Rick Larsen – who was elected as Ranking Member of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure and Congresswoman Marilyn Strickland – who was elected Whip of the Congressional Black Caucus!
I’m confident I speak for all of us when I say we have the best Democratic elected officials in the country here in WA State. Their leadership stands in such stark contrast to a GOP that can’t even seem to elect a House Speaker and I couldn’t be more grateful to be a member of a Party that is unified, effective, and working to build a better Washington and a better America. Thank you for all you do to help our leaders win election cycle after election cycle!
WORKING FOR WASHINGTON
Gearing up for 2023:
The 2023 legislative session begins on Monday and we are so thrilled to see just how much our terrific incoming class of Democratic legislators can accomplish this year!
Here’s what we know they will be focused on based on a recent Seattle Times editorial from Majority Leader Andy Billig and some inside scoop from our friends at the House Democratic Campaign Caucus:
- Expanding the supply of affordable housing and investments made through the Housing Trust Fund
- Focusing on workforce development to provide opportunities for building skills and experiences and reducing barriers for people entering the workforce
- Increasing the number of behavioral health professionals so people can get the care they need
- Continuing to help Washington’s small businesses recover and thrive
- Crafting fiscally responsible budgets that fund the services people count on, like a great K-12 education for every student and high quality health care, while also maintaining the strongest credit rating in state history, earned under Democratic leadership
- Building on progress made on early learning and child care, with the continued implementation of the Fair Start Act
- Working to get things right on public safety, gun violence prevention and helping folks through the drug addiction challenges faced by too many Washingtonians
In the words of Majority Leader Billig:
“When voters expanded our Democratic majorities this year, validating the progress we’ve made and the path we’re on for the future, they voiced trust in our values and policies that put people first. We will honor that trust, and together, continue to make progress for all.”
Please join me in wishing the best of luck to our Democratic representatives down in Olympia. We’ve had a terrific track record of passing historic policy year after year since we reclaimed our Senate majority in 2017, and I know this year will be no exception!
DEMOCRATS IN THE NEWS
By returning every single Democratic incumbent and even growing the majorities in both state legislative chambers, voters sent a clear message on a range of issues.
The president pro tempore ranks second under the president of the Senate — the vice president — and presides over the floor in the vice president’s absence.
Suzan DelBene has been picked to lead Democratic efforts to win back the House of Representatives in 2024.
Congresswoman Marilyn Strickland was recently elected as the Congressional Black Caucus’ (CBC) Whip for the upcoming Congressional session.
U.S. Rep. Rick Larsen, who represents Edmonds 2nd Congressional District, has been elected by his colleagues to serve as ranking member of the Transportation & Infrastructure Committee in the 118th Congress.
A PERSONAL ANNOUNCEMENT
It has been a pleasure to work with you over the past six years and I’m proud of all we have achieved and will continue to achieve together.
When I first ran for State Party Chair in 2017, I didn’t come for the title or to build a resume – I promised to work hard and make transformational change, born of over thirty years’ experience as an activist, elected official, organizational, and community leader. The unofficial job description is just two words: “Elect Democrats.” I believe I have delivered on that promise for these past six years – and it has been an honor to serve in this position.
I want to announce that upon consultation with my family over the Holiday break, I’ve decided to not run for re-election as State Party Chair this January. This was not an easy decision, but I feel strongly that I have accomplished what I set out to do and it is now time to pass the torch to a new generation of leaders ready to light the fires of democracy, teamwork, and community around our state.
I will be serving out my term until a new Chair is elected on Saturday, January 28th at our State Committee Meeting in Olympia. Do stay tuned for more news on the meeting as well.
Thank you again for your partnership and work for our Party. I look forward to seeing many of you in Olympia later this month and am excited for all that is to come for our terrific Democratic Party!
Keep in touch, stay engaged, and as always, thank you for all you do!
Washington State Democratic Party
The work we do today wins elections this November. If you’re ready to elect Democrats in every race and every place in Washington state, invest in our efforts and make a contribution now.
Want to support our work year round? Join Blue Washington, our monthly giving program! It is the most effective way to help candidates, volunteers, organizers, activists, and staff because it gives us the certainty we need to scale up our program with confidence. Your monthly investment ensures we can defend our strong legislative majorities, flip key congressional seats from red to blue, and fight for progressive values. Help us lead the way to victories at all levels of government today!
Washington State Democrats PO Box 4027 Seattle, WA 98194 United States