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Monday, July 14, 2008

Meanwhile, Up in the 46th

posted by on July 14 at 17:25 PM

Scott White, one of two Democratic candidates for state legislature in the 46th district (North Seattle) told the Stranger Election Control Board during an interview last week that upon receiving a $500 contribution from Glacier Northwest lobbyist M.J. Durkan, he had “turned right around” and written a check for the same amount to an unspecified environmental group. (Glacier Northwest has a strip-mining operation on Maury Island and is generally considered an environmental bad guy.) The only trouble—as revealed by White’s Democratic opponent, Gerry Pollet—was that there was no record of the donation in the state Public Disclosure Commission’s records.

Now, granted, Pollet is obsessed about this stuff. (He sued to get White kicked out of the race after the county elections office claimed it didn’t find White’s withdrawal form until after the deadline for pulling out, conveniently annulling White’s attempted withdrawal after he decided he wanted to stay in the race.) And granted, it’s $500—a tiny, tiny percentage of what’s shaping up to be one of the most expensive legislative races in state history. But there’s already been so much weirdness around this race—from the botched withdrawal to the fact that White sent the form from his county office to the question of whether he paid the county $1.50 before or after he sent the fax—that at this point nothing really seems out of the question.

As it turns out, White did make the donation—at least according to Washington Conservation Voters executive director Kurt Fritts, who sent White an email today acknowledging that he gave the group $500 on May 15.

On the other hand, that’s hardly “turning right around”: Durkan made the contribution back in February, something Pollet is sure to seize on as the battle for the 46th drags on into August, then November. And the fact that White took the money in the first place has given Pollet political fodder. “The right thing, of course, would have been to refuse” the money, Pollet says. “Taking it and making a contribution to an environmental group is like allowing a polluter to make a contribution as part of the penalty for polluting.”

Pollet says he will not take money from “special interests” such as insurance companies, timber companies, drug companies, and fireworks manufacturers. White says he has a similar policy that extends to companies like payday lenders, Wal-Mart, and tobacco companies, but adds that he is “not going to categorically say I won’t take money from business, because people work for businesses. Businesses provide jobs.”

White has taken contributions from Weyerhauser ($800), Eli Lilly ($700) Qwest ($700), and the Consumer Fireworks Safety Association ($500), a fireworks industry PAC, among several hundred other individuals and organizations. Pollet’s contributors are mostly individuals, with a few notable exceptions including the Amalgamated Transit Union ($500), the American Federation of Teachers union ($150) and Babcock Services, Inc., a Hanford cleanup consultant ($800).

RSS icon Comments


Memo to Pollett: stop being a tool.

Posted by teve | July 14, 2008 6:42 PM

Memo to White - stop being so incompetent people can't help wondering if you have something to hide.

Posted by Mr. X | July 14, 2008 7:00 PM

It's Pollett's ball. If you don't let him play QB, he'll go home and take his ball with him.

Posted by six shooter | July 14, 2008 7:16 PM

Who the fuck is running White's campaign? When I heard he was running, I was excited. He seemed like a really bright guy. I guess I was wrong.

Posted by What the hell? | July 14, 2008 8:59 PM

teve @1: Memo to Pollett (sic): stop being a tool.

Um, teve, are you sure you didn't mean Scott White? As if taking contributions from Glacier Northwest, Weyerhauser, Eli Lilly, and Qwest don't have "tool" written all over it.

Posted by cressona | July 14, 2008 9:24 PM

They are both fucking crazy!

Posted by I Got Nuthin' | July 14, 2008 9:35 PM

I just took a peak at both their websites and PDC reports and it was clear that White has received way more support and more endorsements from more progressive groups than Pollet. Also, I noted that White is opposed to the Glacier mine, but I can't tell what Pollet's position is. Maybe Pollet supports the mine?

Posted by Duh | July 14, 2008 11:48 PM

Pollet is one of the good guys. His nitpicking only shows he can play hardball with the big boys and often times, win with very little resources. History shows he gets things done and can handle a tsunami of push back when needed. He is a bulldog we need in office. I'm Dem, Environmental, in the 46th and just donated to his campaign.

Posted by Dennis | July 20, 2008 1:06 PM

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