Politics 36th District Race Sends Money Across State Lines
posted by September 9 at 15:09 PMon
Out-of-state money has become a big factor in the race for state Rep. from Seattle’s 36th District, which encompasses parts of Magnolia, Ballard, and Queen Anne—a somewhat surprising development, given that such races are generally decided by a few thousand votes, and considering state legislators make less than $42,000 a year.
Nonetheless, the race between Reuven Carlyle and John Burbank, two Democrats who are seekingr the seat, has sent tens of thousands of dollars across state lines. Carlyle has taken nearly $43,000 in out-of-state donations, or about 21 percent of his total contributions—much of that from California, Washington, D.C., and Maryland. Burbank, meanwhile, brought in about $32,000 from out of state, or about 20 percent of his contributions, much of that from California, Oregon, New York, and Massachusetts.
Burbank, unlike Carlyle, also spent a large amount of money out of state—a fact his opponents will likely point to when rebutting claims that Carlyle is a business-backed outsider, while Burbank is a solid, longtime member of the 36th District community. About $32,000, or 42 percent of his spending so far, went to an Oregon consulting firm called Winning Mark, which Burbank says he chose because “they work primarily on environmental and progressive issues, and I wanted to keep my [campaign] work in the [Pacific Northwest] region.”
Burbank says all this fundraising and spending wouldn’t have been necessary if Carlyle had agreed to a $100,000 spending limit Burbank proposed early in the campaign. But the top-two primary, which requires candidates in single-party-dominated districts like the 36th to start raising and spending money far earlier than in previous years, seems like a likelier culprit. So far, Carlyle has raised around $208,000 (a huge amount for a relatively minor race) to Burbank’s $159,000. The