Hello Loyal Readers,
We are back with the Friday Odds and Ends, all the news that is fit to print but not enough to justify its own post. First a quick meta note, many of you asked for more posts like the analysis of Ericksen’s fundraising I did yesterday, I just wanted to reassure everyone, yes I’ll be looking at everyone’s money this year, Democrats and Republicans, so stay tuned.
The National Transportation Safety Board, the federal agency responsible for oversight of our transportation infrastructure, has released its formal report on the Skagit bridge collapse that happened last year. You can read the whole enchilada here, but the gist of it is that it was an unfortunate combination of aggressive driving, freak chance and as usual, our crumbling infrastructure. Boy, I wish the state Senate Republicans hadn’t blocked the transportation package from getting passed this year.
The sudden loss of Rep. Eric Cantor (R-Virginia), widely considered next in line for Speaker of the House, to a libertarian/tea party candidate has captured the imagination of political pundits, but for me, it made one thing perfectly clear.
Cantor was hit hardest for saying some mildly reasonable things about immigration; that’s what his opponent used to push him out. In the wake of his loss, Republicans will be running away from immigration reform faster than Pete Kremen grabbing the last jar of mustache wax.
That is why I was thrilled to see Rep. Suzan DelBene continuing to push forward on this issue. DelBene, along with several of her colleagues, are pushing the federal agencies for more humane treatment. They may not be able to enact any legislative change, thanks to the Republican control of the House, but they can push for more executive action. You can find more details on her efforts here.
Finally, just like an episode of Game of Thrones, we are losing another Stark from our public discourse. John Stark, Bellingham Herald reporter, is retiring today after several decades in the business. You can read some reminiscing over at the Herald site here. I’ve always found Stark to be approachable, dedicated and someone who shared my love of language. One of my favorite Stark stories was when Republican chair Charlie Crabtree got confused about how newspapers work, he responded with charm and grace. Thank you for all that you’ve done, John.
That’s all for now, stay dry and reasonable out there.