by David Turnoy
Why would 82 people from San Juan, Whatcom, and Skagit Counties go down to Redmond on a rainy Saturday to campaign for a candidate for the state senate? “To change the balance of power in the Washington State Senate, and Manka Dhingra is a fantastic candidate!” exclaimed Mark Mayer, Chair of SJC Our Revolution.
Commented Geri Turnoy, “I think we’ve all been looking for an action to take since the election that could help change the direction of politics, at least in Washington State. With Manka Dhingra as a candidate for senate in the 45th district, this was an excellent opportunity for us to get out and do something productive.”
Last fall after the election, Senator Kevin Ranker gave a rousing speech in which he told us that by flipping one senate seat from Republican to Democrat, we could stop having to fight bills like criminalizing homelessness, disenfranchising voters, and expanding tax loopholes for Big Oil. By taking over the senate, we can pass bills like the Voting Rights Act, the Equal Pay Act, and protecting children from toxic toys (can you believe Senate Republicans oppose this?).
Manka is a fantastic candidate, a community leader and contributor for more than 20 years as a deputy prosecutor, mental health advocate, anti-domestic violence leader, and an award-winning PTA parent and Girl Scout leader. Contrast that with the Republican candidate who recently moved to the district to run for this seat, having no local ties and no relevant experience. This election should be a no-brainer.
While it was a long day, taking an early ferry, then a bus, going out canvassing, then returning that night, the camaraderie among the more than 30 of us from the islands was terrific. Instead of contributing money for another mailer, with which people in Manka’s district are already being bombarded, Sen. Ranker wanted the personal touch of talking to voters, and it was great to be able to interact with people on a human level. Bob Dash said, “Numerous people were on the fence, but by having conversations they were grateful to hear more about our candidate. Some said they are very enthusiastic but didn’t know it would swing the senate—that was really important.”
A big THANKS goes to the San Juan County Democrats, the Orcas Women’s Coalition, Our Revolution, the Riveters Collective, the Skagit and Whatcom Democrats, the 40th Legislative District Democrats, and especially to Senator Ranker and the coordinator of this whole event, Natalie Menacho.
David Turnoy is Chair of the San Juan County Democrats.