The announcements from both parties were politically predictable in the wake of Jay Inslee’s decision to quit being a member of Congress for the rest of the year.
“It’s shameful of Congressman Inslee to lie to his constituents and the people of Washington about his intentions,” said WSRP Chairman Kirby Wilbur.
“It was a difficult decision, but what I need to do right now is focus all my attention on talking to people about what’s really important – creating jobs and growing our economy,” said Inslee.
The reaction from traditional allies on the left, however, has not been kind. Joel Connelly at seattlepi.com and Nina Shapiro at SeattleWeekly.com compared his decision to Sarah Palin’s resignation as Alaska governor. There is other precedent for it being a successful move. Neil Abercrombie left Congress to run for governor of Hawaii.
For locals the bigger impact is half of Kitsap County will not have a member of Congress to vote for them for the rest of the year and a few days into 2013. His staff will continue to work to help constituents. I don’t know how much heft is loss when those staff members don’t have a member of Congress.
Some members of the First District will have a member of Congress for the month between election certification and inauguration. Whoever wins the First District race in November will begin serving the district as soon as the election is certified. That new member of Congress however, will be serving in the new boundaries drawn up as part of redistricting. That means about half of all Kitsap residents will still have to wait until Jan. 3, 2013 when the new Sixth District member of Congress is sworn in.
Because of redistricting, it also means that some Washington residents will have two members of Congress, wherever the new First and the old districts overlap. Lucky them, I guess.