Sometimes, legislative races in this area feature only one candidate. But this year, in the August primary, the 34th District State House Position 2 race is shaping up to be quite the fight. Joe Fitzgibbon (D) of Burien has just joined Mike Heavey (D), “Mac” McElroy (I) Sabra Schneider (D), and Marcee Stone (D) in the race for the seat that Rep. Sharon Nelson – for whom Fitzgibbon has been working – will leave to run for State Senate. They’ve all been invited to the candidates’ forum at this Wednesday night’s Highland Park Action Committee meeting; meantime, read on for Fitzgibbon’s official announcement:
Joe Fitzgibbon, legislative assistant for outgoing Rep. Sharon Nelson and chair of the Burien Planning Commission, today announced his candidacy for Nelson’s seat.
“I am running because the 34th District needs new ideas, a fresh perspective on the challenges facing our communities, and real Olympia experience to hit the ground running,” said Fitzgibbon, a longtime 34th LD resident making his first run for public office. “I am the only candidate in this race with local and state experience, and I plan to campaign full time for the job.”
Nelson, who is seeking election to the State Senate, said, “I am excited to endorse Joe. He is highly respected in Olympia, both by legislators and staff, and has forged strong relationships that make him uniquely suited to represent our district in the Legislature. Our successes in reforming payday lending, protecting Maury Island and Puget Sound, and building an alliance of progressive legislators committed to working families and environmental protection owe a great deal to Joe’s policy knowledge and relationship-building.”
Representative Dave Upthegrove of the 33rd District also endorsed Fitzgibbon’s candidacy, noting, “In order to move the Legislature to act on critical local issues like job creation and cleaning Puget Sound, we need dedicated, hard-working leaders in the House of Representatives. I know that Joe is exceptionally well-prepared to be the kind of lawmaker that we need in Olympia and am looking forward to serving with him.”
Burien City Councilmember Brian Bennett, a former colleague of Fitzgibbon’s on the Burien Planning Commission, stated, “Joe is exactly the strong, progressive leader we need in Olympia. As Chair of the Burien Planning Commission, Joe has taken tough stands on complex, controversial issues, including land use, transportation alternatives, density, and protection of sensitive shorelines. Too often, our elected officials don’t exercise the leadership we need to get progressive policies in place, but Joe has demonstrated that he will be a strong, courageous State Representative.”
Fitzgibbon would be the first Burien resident elected to the Legislature since 1994 and is the only candidate in the race from Burien.
Fitzgibbon noted, “I am proud of my work on behalf of West Seattle, Burien, North Highline, and Vashon during my service in the Legislature for the past three years. From tax reform to helping small businesses to funding our schools and colleges, we need focused, proven leadership. I look forward to the opportunities ahead.”
Rep. Sharon Nelson, 34th
Rep. Dave Upthegrove, 33rd
Rep. Brendan Williams, 22nd
Rep. Geoff Simpson, 47th
Rep. Marko Liias, 21st
Bob Ferguson, King County Council Chair
Joan McGilton, Mayor of Burien
Rose Clark, Deputy Mayor of Burien
Brian Bennett, Burien City Council
Kathy Keene, Burien City Council and Water District No. 20 Commissioner
Lucy Krakowiak, Burien City Council
Bill Tracy, Southwest Suburban Sewer District Commissioner
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