Students choose Barack Obama, Jay Inslee in mock election

November 13, 2012

NEW — 8 a.m. Nov. 13, 2012

Students statewide and in the Issaquah School District chose the same candidates as grown-up voters — Barack Obama for president and Jay Inslee for governor.

The exercise included 38,848 students statewide, including classes at Cascade Ridge Elementary, Endeavour Elementary, Sunset Elementary, Pine Lake Middle and Issaquah High schools in the Issaquah School District. The number of students participating statewide shattered the record for participation — about 18,000 students — set in 2008.

Students cast ballots online from Oct. 29 to Nov. 2, and then Secretary of State Sam Reed’s office posted the results online. The results in the statewide Student Mock Election reflected the outcome in the real election, albeit with different margins.

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Costco looms large in race between Barack Obama, Mitt Romney

October 30, 2012

Pundits claim the presidential contest could hinge on so-called Walmart moms, but another discount chain is often mentioned on the campaign trail, too.

Jim Sinegal

Both President Barack Obama and challenger Mitt Romney embraced Issaquah-based Costco on the stump, albeit for different reasons.

Support from Costco cofounder and former CEO Jim Sinegal allows Obama to highlight a business success in a feeble economy. The affluent Romney’s affinity for Costco allows the former Massachusetts governor to project a more down-to-earth image.

“Costco’s story is the American story,” Sinegal proclaimed to delegates and dignitaries in a September speech at the Democratic National Convention focused on job creation and the economy.

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In presidential election, voters face health care choice

October 30, 2012

Hall Monitor
Joshua Schaier
Skyline High School

For many seniors, this election will be their first opportunity to vote and the first time that they’ve really had to pay attention to the issues. The Affordable Care Act is one of the biggest issues in the 2012 election. It is hotly contested by politicians from both parties. What about this law has stirred such passionate reactions from both sides?

The ACA is a law that strives to make sure Americans have the health insurance coverage they need. To ensure that more Americans get health insurance, a tax is placed on Americans who don’t buy health insurance and refuse to buy it. It also makes sure that insurance companies are more tightly regulated.

Many Americans feel the government has no right to interfere in healthcare, and think Americans who don’t want health insurance shouldn’t be penalized for that decision. They see it as a question of the government encroaching on their freedoms.

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Change in geography alters landscape for congressional race

October 23, 2012

Karen Porterfield

Dave Reichert

The showdown in the 8th Congressional District is far different from the most recent contests for the seat.

Incumbent Republican Dave Reichert held on amid spirited challenges from Democrats in 2006, 2008 and 2010. Redistricting last year reshaped the landscape for the district, and the 2012 race is not attracting the same kind of attention — or money — as the earlier battles.

Reichert’s opponent is Issaquah Democrat Karen Porterfield, a nonprofit professional and adjunct instructor at Seattle University.

Porterfield grew up in Seattle, in a family active in Democratic politics, and settled in Issaquah more than a decade ago. She said the expertise she gained in affordable housing development and in leadership roles at nonprofit organizations means she could offer a unique perspective in Congress.

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Press Editorial

October 9, 2012

Join conversation at candidate forum

In 2008, fueled in part by the historic candidacy of Barack Obama to the highest office in the land, voters engaged in the political process in a once-in-a-generation way.

Though 2012 cannot recapture the sense of excitement, contests up and down the ballot merit some serious attention from Issaquah voters. So much attention is focused on the race for president, but Washington voters must decide important races for governor and other executive positions.

Voters also face a chance to make history through ballot measures to legalize marijuana and affirm the rights of same-sex couples to marry.

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Off the Press

October 9, 2012

Campaign trail includes strange detour

Warren Kagarise
Press reporter

Journalism puts me into some strange situations from time to time, but the oddest yet remains the time I met Ann Romney, wife of Mitt and potential first lady-in-waiting.

The memory came rushing back to me Oct. 3, as I watched Romney greet her husband onstage after his debate with the president.

I met Romney in December 2007, before the former Massachusetts governor suffered a surprise loss to Mike Huckabee in the Iowa caucuses.

I worked as a reporter at a Florida newspaper group at the time and, through a connection to the publisher, slipped behind the cordon to interview Ann Romney after a meet-and-greet fundraiser in Vero Beach, Fla.

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Local Democrats rally, volunteer as party gathers in Charlotte

September 11, 2012

First lady Michelle Obama and President Barack Obama gesture to the crowd at the Democratic National Convention on Sept. 6. By Emiliana Chavez

The television audience for the 2012 Democratic National Convention remembers the event for speeches from former President Bill Clinton, first lady Michelle Obama and more, but local delegates to the convention said projects far from the convention floor defined the days in Charlotte, N.C.

The agenda for the event included the usual party business — a blur of speeches and celebrations — and Southern hospitality aplenty.

Washington Democrats sent 121 delegates and eight alternates to the convention. The delegate ranks included Issaquah resident Jennifer Sutton and Sammamish resident Dorothy Willard.

Sutton joined a volunteer effort from Craftsman and “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” host Ty Pennington called House United. The project enlisted volunteers at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., to start construction on a home.

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Off the Press

September 11, 2012

Delegates defy conventional wisdom

Warren Kagarise
Press reporter

Early on, I dismissed the 2012 Democratic and Republican conventions as prime-time infomercials for both parties, more spectacle than substance.

Scenes from the convention stages in Tampa, Fla., and Charlotte, N.C., seemed about as garish as Times Square. For proof, look no further than the Republicans’ set fashioned from 13 giant LED screens — and billed as “America’s living room.”

Cynicism abounds come campaign season, and I admit to feeling more than a little jaded about the parties’ conventions.

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City lowers flags to mark 9/11 anniversary

September 11, 2012

NEW — 10 a.m. Sept. 11, 2012

City leaders lowered flags to half-staff at Issaquah City Hall and other municipal buildings Tuesday to commemorate 11 years since the 9/11 attacks.

The federal government and local governments across the United States lowered flags at public buildings for the day, officially called Patriot Day and the National Day of Service and Remembrance.

The flags should remain at half-staff until late Tuesday or early Wednesday.

“More than a decade later, the world we live in is forever changed,” President Barack Obama said in a proclamation to commemorate the anniversary. “But as we mark the anniversary of Sept. 11, we remember what remains the same: our character as a nation, our faith in one another, and our legacy as a country strengthened by service and selflessness.”

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Costco cofounder at Democratic convention: ‘Costco’s story is the American story’

September 6, 2012

NEW — 10 a.m. Sept. 6, 2012

Costco cofounder and former CEO Jim Sinegal offered a forceful defense of President Barack Obama’s economic policies Wednesday in a speech at the Democratic National Convention.

Jim Sinegal

Sinegal said Obama is more likely to create a hospitable climate for job creation than Republican rival Mitt Romney. The former leader of Issaquah-based Costco also countered GOP criticism of Obama’s “you didn’t build that” line.

“We built our company in a place where anyone can make it with hard work, a little luck and a little help from their neighbors and their country,” Sinegal said to delegates and attendees at the Time Warner Cable Arena in Charlotte, N.C. “I’m here tonight because Costco’s story is the American story.”

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