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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, December 6 2013 - Volume 41 Issue 49
Jamie Pedersen to succeed Ed Murray in Senate, Brady Walkinshaw to take Pedersen's House seat
Section One
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Jamie Pedersen to succeed Ed Murray in Senate, Brady Walkinshaw to take Pedersen's House seat

by Mike Andrew - SGN Staff Writer

As expected, 43rd Legislative District activists chose current state Rep. Jamie Pedersen to succeed Ed Murray in the state Senate. Murray, of course, will take office as Mayor of Seattle on January 1.

According to procedure, when a vacancy occurs in the state legislature, the Precinct Committee Officers (PCOs) of the legislative district recommend a ranked list of three potential successors, and then the King County Council appoints a replacement. Normally the candidate ranked first by the PCOs gets the spot.

Pedersen was the only person who came forward to fill Murray's seat, and as a veteran House member, his selection was a no-brainer for the PCOs.

Moving Pedersen to the Senate created another vacancy in the House, however, and that seat was the focus of a competitive three-way race between Brady Walkinshaw - the eventual winner - Scott Forbes, and Cristina Gonzalez.

Walkinshaw, a program manager at the Gates Foundation, is a newcomer to public office. The son of a Cuban immigrant mother, he was raised on an organic farm in rural Washington. He told the 43rd District PCOs that he grew up 'Gay and Latino.'

Walkinshaw promised to be a champion of the 43rd District's progressive values, and insiders told SGN that he was thought to be the most progressive of the three candidates.

Forbes is a veteran 43rd District activist, and Gonzalez is an economist with King County.

The House seat that was Pedersen's and will now probably be Walkinshaw's was formerly occupied by Cal Anderson, the state's first openly Gay legislator. When Anderson went to the state Senate in 1994, the House seat was taken by Ed Murray, and when Murray was elected to the Senate in 2006, Pedersen won the House seat.

The seat has been continuously occupied by Gay representatives since Anderson was appointed to fill a vacancy in 1987.

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