Republican Steve Litzow garners challenge in legislative race

May 1, 2012

State Sen. Steve Litzow, a freshman Republican from Mercer Island and a local representative in Olympia, attracted a challenger April 17 in the race for a full term.

Democrat Maureen Judge, a Mercer Island resident and former Washington Toxics Coalition executive director, entered the race against Litzow.

“As a mother, I deeply value education funding as a force to protect our state’s future competitiveness and economic health,” Judge said in a statement. “During his 2010 campaign, Steve Litzow promised he would fight for education funding. But this legislative session he demonstrated that he’d rather toe the Republican Party line than fight for our kids, our state and our future.”

In 2010, Litzow defeated appointed incumbent Randy Gordon by 192 votes to represent the 41st Legislative District in the Senate. (The recent redistricting process put most of Issaquah inside the district.)

Litzow and Gordon battled to fill the unexpired term of former Sen. Fred Jarrett, the current King County deputy executive.

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Issaquah legislators top list on missed votes tally

April 24, 2012

NEW — 3 p.m. April 24, 2012

Local legislators missed the most votes in the Legislature during the 2012 regular and special sessions.

Glenn Anderson

The information, released Tuesday in a report from the nonpartisan organization WashingtonVotes.org, ranks state Rep. Glenn Anderson at the top for both chambers, followed by state Sen. Cheryl Pflug and state Rep. Jay Rodne.

Anderson missed 95 votes to top the list for Senate and House of Representatives members. Pflug did not participate in 64 votes and Rodne did not participate in 62.

The lawmakers represent Issaquah and the 5th Legislative District.

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Municipal League of King County honors local leaders, libraries

April 10, 2012

Efforts to help people find jobs, learn English and grow small businesses earned the Issaquah-based King County Library System a top honor from the Municipal League of King County.

The nonprofit, nonpartisan organization recognized the library system as Organization of the Year, and also honored King County Executive Dow Constantine and local state Sen. Steve Litzow in the 53rd Annual Civic Awards.

Each year, the Municipal League and the Municipal League Foundation present the honors to highlight people and organizations for significant contributions to the community. Organizers held a ceremony April 5 to honor the recipients.

Constantine received the James R. Ellis Regional Leadership Award for years of public service, efforts to bring a culture of performance to county government, completion of major projects and improved relationships among the county and other jurisdictions.

The award honors individuals and organizations for contributing significant leadership in tackling regional public policy issues.

Litzow, a freshman Republican from Mercer Island, and state Sen. Ed Murray, a veteran Seattle Democrat, shared the Warren G. Magnuson Award for bipartisan leadership to pass same-sex marriage legislation. (Litzow represents Issaquah neighborhoods in the 41st Legislative District.)

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Municipal League honors King County Library System, elected officials

April 3, 2012

NEW — 8 p.m. April 3, 2012

Efforts to help people find jobs, learn English and grow small businesses earned the Issaquah-based King County Library System a top honor from the Municipal League of King County.

The nonprofit, nonpartisan organization recognized the library system as Organization of the Year, and also honored King County Executive Dow Constantine and local state Sen. Steve Litzow, in the 53rd Annual Civic Awards.

Each year, the Municipal League and the Municipal League Foundation present the honors to highlight people and organizations for significant contributions to the community. Organizers plan a Thursday ceremony to honor the recipients.

Constantine earned the James R. Ellis Regional Leadership Award for years of public service, efforts to bring a culture of performance to county government, completion of major projects and improved relationships among the county and other jurisdictions.

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Mitt Romney receives stamp of approval from elected officials, too

March 6, 2012

Mitt Romney earned key endorsements from Republican elected leaders on the Eastside, including Kathy Lambert, the Issaquah representative on the King County Council, local state Sen. Steve Litzow and local state Rep. Jay Rodne before the caucuses.

U.S. Rep. Dave Reichert, the Issaquah representative in Congress, endorsed Romney days before the caucuses.

Local former state Sen. Dino Rossi, a past candidate for governor and U.S. senator, is another Romney supporter.

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Local Republicans gather for caucuses amid strong turnout

March 3, 2012

Terry LaBrue, a precinct committee officer and Issaquah political consultant, announces results for the Brookshire precinct Saturday at Discovery Elementary School. By Warren Kagarise

NEW — 3:15 p.m. March 3, 2012

Republicans clustered at community halls and elementary schools in Issaquah and nearby communities Saturday, as a long presidential nominating contest offered local caucusgoers a chance to shape the national contest.

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Governor signs same-sex marriage bill with local legislators’ support

February 14, 2012

Issaquah legislators joined Gov. Chris Gregoire to legalize same-sex marriage in Washington — a decision supporters hailed as an “historic” milestone.

Gov. Chris Gregoire

The governor, a Democrat, signed the legislation Feb. 13 as local state Sen. Cheryl Pflug and other supporters looked on from the packed State Reception Room at the Capitol.

The landmark legislation put Washington among the half-dozen states and Washington, D.C., to allow same-sex marriage, but the measure could face a challenge on the November ballot before any weddings occur.

“It is a day historians will mark as a milestone for equal rights — a day when we did what was right, we did what was just, and we did what was fair,” Gregoire said. “We stood up for equality and we did it together — Republicans and Democrats, gay and straight, young and old, and a variety of religious faiths. I’m proud of who and what we are in this state.”

The legislation cleared the state House of Representatives in a 55-43 decision Feb. 8 — the last hurdle before the measure reached the governor. Republican Glenn Anderson joined local Democrats in the House to approve a landmark bill to legalize same-sex marriage.

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Issaquah residents invited to legislative town hall

February 14, 2012

Residents can join Issaquah legislators to discuss the ongoing session in Olympia at town hall meetings in Mercer Island and Newcastle soon.

Meet state Sen. Steve Litzow and state Reps. Judy Clibborn and Marcie Maxwell — 41st Legislative District lawmakers — at the Feb. 18 meetings. The sessions come as the Legislature confronts a $1.5 billion shortfall in the state budget.

The bipartisan delegation — Republican Litzow; Democrats Clibborn and Maxwell — plans to answer participants’ questions.

The morning meeting is scheduled from 10-11:30 a.m. at Hazelwood Elementary School, 7100 116th Ave. S.E., Newcastle. The afternoon session is planned from 1:30-3 p.m. at Mercer Island High School, 9100 S.E. 42nd St., Mercer Island.

Participants can submit questions before the meeting. Email questions to townhall41@leg.wa.gov or mail them to Sen. Steve Litzow, P.O. Box 40441, Olympia, WA 98504.

Washington State Redistricting Commission members shifted the 41st District from encompassing Cougar Mountain neighborhoods to include North Issaquah and Sammamish. (Remaining Issaquah neighborhoods fall inside the 5th Legislative District.)

The realigned political maps go into effect for the November election.

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Governor signs same-sex marriage into law after Issaquah legislators support bill

February 13, 2012

NEW — 5 p.m. Feb. 13, 2012

Issaquah legislators joined Gov. Chris Gregoire to legalize same-sex marriage in Washington — a decision supporters hailed as an “historic” milestone.

Gov. Chris Gregoire

The governor, a Democrat, signed the legislation Monday as local state Sen. Cheryl Pflug and other supporters looked on from the packed State Reception Room at the Capitol.

The landmark legislation put Washington among the half-dozen states and Washington, D.C., to allow same-sex marriage, but the measure could face a challenge on the November ballot before any weddings occur.

“It is a day historians will mark as a milestone for equal rights — a day when we did what was right, we did what was just, and we did what was fair,” Gregoire said. “We stood up for equality and we did it together — Republicans and Democrats, gay and straight, young and old, and a variety of religious faiths. I’m proud of who and what we are in this state.”

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Most Issaquah representatives support ‘historic’ same-sex marriage bill

February 9, 2012

NEW — 8 a.m. Feb. 9, 2012

Republican Glenn Anderson on Wednesday joined local Democrats in the state House of Representatives to approve a landmark bill to legalize same-sex marriage in Washington.

Glenn Anderson

The lawmakers representing Issaquah in the House joined the majority on the 55-43 decision. The delegation is comprised of Democrats, except for Anderson and state Rep. Jay Rodne.

The legislation heads to Gov. Chris Gregoire. The governor, a Democrat, is expected to sign the bill in the days ahead.

In the Issaquah delegation, state Reps. Judy Clibborn, Marcie Maxwell, Deb Eddy and Ross Hunter supported the legislation.

Rodne opposed the measure to allow same-sex marriage. The legislator, a North Bend Republican, asked for a referendum clause to send the issue to voters in November; the proposed amendment failed.

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