January 30, 2017
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Presidential administration appoints state senators to federal posts

Sen. Brian Dansel, R-Republic, notified Senate leaders and Gov. Jay Inslee on Tuesday that he is stepping down from the 7th District Senate seat he has held since 2013. The presidential administration has tapped Dansel to serve as a special assistant to the U.S. agriculture secretary.

Rep. Shelly Short, R-Addy, was appointed today to fill the position until a special election can be held this fall. Republicans in the 7th District will now recommend choices to fill Short's House position.

Dansel's resignation meant that the Senate was temporarily tied last week, with 24 Democrats and 24 members of the Majority Coalition Caucus. Dansel’s departure and the absence of Sen. Doug Ericksen, who took on a temporary role with the federal administration, created a situation where Senate Democrats wanted to temporarily take control of the Senate to vote on school funding legislation. Democrats tried to take control of the Senate on Friday, but were ultimately unsuccessful.

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Kudos to Microsoft for bold public-policy goals for Washington state

By The Seattle Times Editorial Board

Microsoft is taking its regional public service to a new level with the release of an ambitious legislative agenda for Washington state.

Under its president, Brad Smith, the company has increasingly advocated for education, transportation and economic development.

Recognizing that the entire state has unmet needs, the company is broadening its agenda beyond the Puget Sound area. Best of all, Microsoft is offering to help incubate and partly fund several new programs to get them launched.

The public benefits from such corporate citizens providing thoughtful and supportive engagement on critical policy issues.

Read the full editorial in The Seattle Times
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