(The following was originally published in The Islands’ Sounder.)
The following was submitted by the San Juan County Democrats for Orcas Island.
In the race for Washington State’s 2nd Congressional District seat, the San Juan County Democrats have voted to endorse independent Mike Lapointe over incumbent Democrat Rick Larsenin the Aug. 5 primary election.
In a unique attempt to include as many county Democrats as possible in the endorsement process, the San Juan County Democrats held separate endorsement meetings on July 26 and 27 on Orcas, Lopez, and San Juan Islands. Both Mike Lapointe and Rep. Larsen were invited. Mike attended each of the three meetings, while Rep. Larsen did not attend nor did any of his surrogates. In total at these three meetings, the vote was 50-0 to endorse Mike Lapointe.
The main factors in this decision were the incumbent’s failure to adequately address two of the primary concerns of the citizens of the San Juan Islands, namely the potential negative environmental and economic consequences of building the Gateway Pacific Terminal coal export facility near Bellingham that will ship massive amounts of coal through our county’s waters, as well as the quality-of-life and health-destroying noise of the Navy’s Growler jets based on Whidbey Island.