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Dino Rossi officially kicks off Washington Senate bid

Former state Sen. Dino Rossi (R) made his long-awaited entry into the Washington Senate race this morning via a web video released this morning.

"Over the past several months, as I watched Congress pile more and more debt on top of our children and grandchildren; as I watched them ram through a partisan, ill-conceived health care bill; as I watched them pass new job-killing taxes and regulations, I knew I had to do something about it. That's why I've made the decision to run for the United States Senate," Rossi says in a five-minute video posted on his campaign website.

In the video, Rossi makes no specific mention of Sen. Patty Murray (D), the three-term incumbent he is seeking to unseat. But he hammers D.C. lawmakers on the whole for passing policies that "have put us on the edge of a fiscal cliff."

He also points to his experience in the state Senate, stating that he "brought both parties together to balance the budget without raising taxes" in the face of "what was at the time the largest deficit in state history."

"I did it by seeking out a fiscally conservative majority, rather than a partisan majority," Rossi says in the video. "Now I want to help do the same thing in the other Washington."

Today's announcement marks Rossi's third run at statewide office; he made two failed bids against Gov. Chris Gregoire (D) in 2004 and 2008. On the trail, he has often made mention of his modest upbringing: The grandson of Italian immigrants, Rossi grew up the youngest of seven children and worked as a janitor while studying business administration at Seattle University. He later went on to become a successful commercial realtor and investor and served in the state Senate from 1997 to 2003.

Former NFL player Clint Didier (R) -- who has been endorsed by former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin (R) -- businessman Paul Akers (R) and state Sen. Don Benton (R) are also competing for the GOP nod. All three have previously said they will stay in the race regardless of Rossi's decision.

Challenging Murray will be no easy task, however. The state's senior senator spent over $11 million on her 2004 re-election bid, and had nearly $6 million in her campaign account at the end of March. The state has voted Democratic in the past six presidential elections, giving President Obama 58 percent over Sen. John McCain's (R-Ariz.) 40 percent in 2008.

-- Felicia Sonmez

By Felicia Sonmez  |  May 26, 2010; 10:00 AM ET
Categories:  Senate  
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It is difficult for me to understand how Senator Murray receives support from Washington voters when she votes for a healthcare bill that did not have bipartisan support


That would be because you hang around people who think the Republicans are serious about carrying out their responsibilities.

Posted by: Noacoler | May 26, 2010 5:36 PM | Report abuse

Clearly the Sestak situation is another IMPEACHABLE OFFENSE.

Obama has got to be kidding.

I just hope they include FALSE CHARGES OF RACISM as one of the counts in the IMPEACHMENT PROCEEDINGS.




Posted by: 37thand0street | May 26, 2010 4:08 PM | Report abuse

Rossi is a very legitimate candidate. He ran well against Gregoire, but the economy had not turned south as yet, so she one. Gregoire is finished in this state.
He is the only possible candidate that could defeat Murray. I for one have voted for Murray in all the past elections, but will gladly change my vote to Rossi. The overall perception among independents (like myself) is that Murray has done NOTHING for this state in 24 years. She only shows up at election time. She has an uphill battle in every place but King County. Democrats are in trouble on this one!

Posted by: thehiker | May 26, 2010 3:20 PM | Report abuse

It is difficult for me to understand how Senator Murray receives support from Washington voters when she votes for a healthcare bill that did not have bipartisan support, she did not read and has over 1,000 areas that have not been defined. These issues have still to be written by Sebelius so no one knows what they mean. This is not the way to write any legislation.

Posted by: Patriot65 | May 26, 2010 3:19 PM | Report abuse

Rossi is a legitimate challenger to Murray, as he's likely the only Republican interested in running this cycle that would be. In a recent Rasmussen poll


I stopped there.

Rasmussen? Don't you guys ever learn?

And Rossi .. legitimate challenger my rear end. He's despised here, and the only people who support him are teabagger types who drive 20+ year old beaters.

Posted by: Noacoler | May 26, 2010 1:42 PM | Report abuse

The Ds in Washington have to keep playing whack a mole with this guy, but he seems to like it, playing hide and seek, then getting whacked from time to time...go figure.

Posted by: shrink2 | May 26, 2010 12:50 PM | Report abuse

Rossi is a legitimate challenger to Murray, as he's likely the only Republican interested in running this cycle that would be. In a recent Rasmussen poll, Murray lead Rossi 48%-46% before Rossi had even entered the race. This is a big plus for John Cornyn as Washington is now in play for 2010.

Posted by: reason5 | May 26, 2010 12:33 PM | Report abuse

Watching the oil gusher is more interesting than Rossi's web video. Sure, the oil and gas spewing out of a broken pipe is kind of monotonous, just sayin'

Posted by: shrink2 | May 26, 2010 12:08 PM | Report abuse

heh-heh Arctic Grifter, indeed.

Posted by: drindl | May 26, 2010 12:00 PM | Report abuse

Seattle headlines 11/3:

Murray 62%
Rossi 35%
Nutjobs 3%

why don't you switch to covering pro wrestling, Sonmez

Posted by: Noacoler | May 26, 2010 11:57 AM | Report abuse

bsimon -- this is another R primary where it's a race to the bottom over who's loonier.

Posted by: drindl | May 26, 2010 11:51 AM | Report abuse

Cassy Fiano comments on the *cough* Command in Chief's *cough* plans to spend Memorial Day vacationing among his old radical left pals in Chicago instead of laying a wreath in Arlington:

Memorial Day should be a pretty big priority for the Commander-in-Chief of the United States Armed Forces. The wreath-laying ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery is not just some arbitrary meaningless tradition. It actually means something, and Obama is just blowing it off so that he can go hang out in Chicago. I understand the desire to go home for a little while, but when you're the president, Memorial Day ceases to be just another holiday where you get to take an extra day off for a weekend and have a barbecue. For him, he still has to work. It's part of his responsibility as president. Blowing off paying his respects to the fallen at Arlington National Cemetery — our country's most sacred shrine — on Memorial Day is inexcusable. It's despicable and he does not deserve the title of Commander-in-Chief if he has this little respect for the heroes who have given their lives for their country.
If he doesn't like it, he can always resign.
I'm curious how much golf he'll play while he's in Chicago.
The arrogance continues to appall. But at least we have the satisfaction of knowing it will lead to his downfall.

Posted by: bumblingberry | May 26, 2010 11:41 AM | Report abuse

This is like the Swallows to Capistrano - Rossi makes his entry for elected office. This man can't stop running.

But wait, there already is an endorsement by the Arctic Grifter - that Rossi can't catch a break.

Posted by: BobSanderson | May 26, 2010 11:34 AM | Report abuse

Why all the excitement about a guy who's already lost twice statewide and is now jumping into an already full race for the nomination?

Or is this another case of the establishment v. fringe candidates duking it out in the primary, making the rest of us wonder who's running the show over in the GTP tent?

Posted by: bsimon1 | May 26, 2010 11:21 AM | Report abuse


Sorry I was drooling on my keyboard.

Posted by: AndyR3 | May 26, 2010 10:55 AM | Report abuse

Rossi is probably the best candidate Republicans could have gotten, but Murray is realy tough, and she consistently exceeds expectations. In 04, Rep. George Nethercutt never really made the race fully competitive. In 1998, Rep. Linda Smith ran hard, but ended up losing 58-42, a much bigger margin than anyone expected. In Rep. Rod Chandler was considered to have about an even shot at winning, but didn't. He's partly to blame; referencing the song "Dang Me" during a debate wasn't a good idea. Murray winning the primary was also a surprise. It definitely won't be easy for Rossi, regardless of the climate.

Posted by: joeyjoejoe | May 26, 2010 10:54 AM | Report abuse

Another puff piece for a rightiwng loon no one cares about except CC.

Posted by: drindl | May 26, 2010 10:25 AM | Report abuse

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