Voters face tough choice in race for 44th District Position 2

In the race for 44th District Representative, Position 2, voters will face a tough decision when deciding between incumbent Democrat Liz Loomis and challenger Republican Mike Hope.

We really liked both of these candidates and believe both would represent the district in an exemplary manner. The Arlington Times and Marysville Globe editorial board initially split on whom to endorse in this race. After much discussion we gave a slight edge to Loomis based on her legislative experience and endorse her for the 44th District Representative, Position 2.

Both candidates have compelling life stories which would give them unique perspectives when dealing with the economic challenges we face today. Hope is a small business owner, a coach and a 10-year veteran with the Seattle Police Department. His law enforcement experience gives him insight as to which programs work and which ones don’t. He is a strong advocate of Drug Court and the benefits it brings to society. Loomis is a small business owner who has served on the Snohomish City County, as mayor of Snohomish and was appointed as the 44th District Representative, Position 2, in January 2008. When Loomis was a child during the economic crisis of the 1970s, her father lost his business and her family lost their home which gives her a unique perspective on the challenges families face during today’s economic downturn.

When it comes to the budget, both candidates stated they would not support any tax increases or any new taxes. Both also agreed that given the projected $3.2 billion shortfall in the budget that some programs would have to be cut or eliminated, while other programs would have to be put on hold. When it comes to the question of a University of Washington branch campus, Loomis supports a branch campus that should be located close to where the population is and where the infrastructure is in place. Hope does not support a branch campus and prefers a stand-alone university at the proposed Marysville site. Both candidates also agree that the WASL is fatally flawed and needed to be replaced. Both candidates expressed not only a willingness, but also a desire to reach across the aisle to work in a bipartisan manner.

Both of these candidates would would make excellent legislators and we’d feel comfortable having either one of them represent the 44th District. But based on her experience as a city council member, mayor and legislator, we are endorsing Loomis for Position 2. We also encourage Hope to continue to be involved and look forward to the opportunity of endorsing him in the future.

For more information about the candidates, see their Web sites at www.lizloomis.com or www.mikehope2008.com.

To contact a member of The Marysville Globe/Arlington Times editorial board — Stuart Chernis or Scott Frank — e-mail forum@marysvilleglobe.com.

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