News Another Democratic First in Olympia…
posted by January 9 at 10:10 AMon
although, it’s not necessarily worthy of applause.
The State House, dominated by a 62-36 Democratic majority, voted unanimously yesterday to change the rules so they could do something that’s never been done: Appoint a member of the minority party as a committee chair.
Indeed, the Democrats made Rep. Tom Campbell (R-2, Parts of Pierce and Thurston Counties) chair of the environmental health committee. Additionally, the Dems handed a vice chair postion to Rep. Maureen Walsh (R-16, Walla Walla). Walsh will be vice chair of the Early Learning & Children’s Services committee. Democrat Ruth Kagi (D-Lake Forest) will chair that committee.
Speaker of the House, Rep. Frank Chopp (D-43, Capitol Hill, Wallingford, U-District) explained the move:
Good ideas and leadership do not come from just one side of the aisle. The continued prosperity of Washington state depends on all of us working together cooperatively. In making their decisions, the House Democratic Caucus carefully considered the varied talents of all House members, the needs of our people, and the forward momentum of our state. Rep. Walsh and Rep. Campbell remain Republican members of the House, but that does not impact our respect for their abilities and their dedication to this institution — in fact, we think Washington will be better served by this bipartisanship.