Tuesday, May 24, 2022
May 24, 2022

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Governor endorses Denny Heck for Congress


Gov. Chris Gregoire has endorsed Olympia businessman and former state legislator Denny Heck in his campaign for the 3rd Congressional District seat being vacated by U.S. Rep. Brian Baird.

“Denny Heck is a rare candidate for public office — one with a broad and deep background both in public service, and more recently in the private sector, with a proven track record of growing businesses and creating jobs,” the governor said in a statement sent via her campaign e-mail Wednesday.

Gregoire called Heck’s background “truly exceptional,” noting that prior to his work in the private sector, he represented Clark County in the Washington legislature and served as chief of staff to Gov. Booth Gardner, then ”turned his passion for open, transparent government into a reality as the co-founder and original CEO of TVW, our state’s award winning public affairs network.”

Heck, a Democrat who was born in Vancouver and attended Clark County schools, has spent the last decade investing in businesses, growing companies and creating real jobs around the Pacific Northwest, the governor said.

“We don’t need to tell you these are some of the most difficult times in decades,” she said. “Unemployment remains high a full two years after the onset of this recession, and families are still worried about keeping up with mortgages and the stability of their jobs. Washington State needs strong public servants and leaders who understand how to grow businesses and create jobs as we work towards economic recovery.”

Heck has invested $100,000 of his own money in his campaign and raised another $115,000 in the final eight days of 2009, giving him a substantial head start on fund-raising in the highly competitive 3rd District contest.

Three Clark County legislators, Sen. Craig Pridemore and Rep. Deb Wallace, both Democrats, and Rep. Jaime Herrera, R-Camas, also are candidates for the seat.

“We know and respect the other candidates in the race, and consider them fine public servants,” Gregoire said. “However, this is a unique time for our country and we believe Denny Heck is a candidate who can win in November and start fighting for southwest Washington in Congress on day one.”

Also signing Gregoire’s endorsement letter were Insurance Commissioner Mike Kreidler, former Gov. Gardner, and former 3rd District Congressman Don Bonker.

Kathie Durbin: 36-735-4523 or kathie.durbin@columbian.com.

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