Paul Queary

Paul Queary, a veteran AP reporter and editor, is founder of The Washington Observer, an independent newsletter on politics, government and the influence thereof in Washington State.

Where Builders are Investing in Spokane and Seattle Politics

Builders are typically looking for favorable climates to build things, and generally oppose things like rent control, requirements for affordable units, and high construction impact fees. All three of the candidates they’re backing face progressives who are likely to embrace those ideas. 

How You Can Tell Spokane’s Mayoral Race is Getting Serious

Billboards went up recently painting Brown and Betsy Wilkerson, a city council member running for council president, as soft on crime. 

Olympia Report: Candidates Crowd State Land Commissioner Race

It looks like a crowd on the leftward edge of the race that would seem to benefit Kevin Van De Wege, who figures to be the choice of timber industry interests who would prefer more industry-friendly management of the state’s forests.

Mark Mullet Gets Some Campaign Cash, and Other Olympia News

The biggest question about Mullet’s campaign is whether he’s got a real shot to get out of next August’s primary, given the presence of Attorney General Bob Ferguson and former U.S. Rep. Dave Reichert. 

Olympia Merry Go Round: Fergie’s Media Coup, State Education Czar

Look for Bob Ferguson to get a solid two cycles of good pub out of this, for which the Ferguson campaign will spend exactly nothing.

Ferguson Surges in Campaign Cash

Ferguson’s fundraising machine is working to create a sense of inevitability among the political donor class in aid of choking off the flow of money to opposition campaigns. With just under a year before the 2024 primary, he’s got a nearly 7-1 advantage.

Primary Results and an Inevitable New State Attorney General

Fat-cat money seems to have done the trick in helping establishment candidates in Seattle, but pro-business incumbents in Spokane and Whatcom are struggling.

Labor Comes A-Courting Bob Ferguson

The fact that the state labor council gave Ferguson a prime speaking spot speaks volumes.

Dave Reichert for Governor?

Perhaps no politician here is more exposed to the Trump conundrum than Reichert, who will have to wear his voting record during the first two years of that administration in a state where the former president and likely nominee is deeply unpopular.

The Money Primary: Tracking Seattle City Council Races

Some candidates have a lot of money already; others are saving up for later expenditures; still others have deep-pocketed donors to tap in the future.