The Moderate Washingtonian

Outlook on politics and elections in the state of Washington from an overall centrist viewpoint. My views tend to be libertarian in nature, but at the same time are largely nonpartisan.

31 July 2006

Stark update

With help from chief Spokesman Review political reporter Jim Camden, I have learned that Spokane City Councilman Brad Stark is indeed running for Assessor as a Republican. While Stark had been visible working on Democratic campaigns in the past, he told SR in the article linked above that he is "definitely, most wholeheartedly" is a Republican but that he is not limited by party labels. He says his conservative economic positions are the root of his affiliation. He has most recently given money to Democratic Senate candidate Chris Marr.

I have to say I'm surprised, it's always a bit humbling to be caught off-guard when you fancy yourself as in the know on political matters, but I suppose after contemplating his record when I lived in his district it's a bit less surprising. Councilman Stark had always struck me as independent-minded and fiscally-responsible, but the Democratic connections still make the declaration surreal. Prior to catching up with Mr. Camden I had sent an email to the councilman and was referred to his personal email account for non-city matters, so hopefully we can get the scoop directly from the man himself.

As for how the newly-minted Republican might fare, I think he poses a big threat to the incumbent. While in a Republican primary in Spokane County his moderate/independent streak might be a detriment, Ralph Baker only won the position in an unopposed special election and had previously had his clock cleaned by Democratic County Auditor Vicky Dalton. While I had reasoned that a gig on the city council of the state's second-largest city was preferable to a behind-the-scenes county office, I think this provides a decent shot for Mr. Stark's budding career in partisan political office.


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