Senator Patty Murray Breaks Silence with Endorsement in Tacoma-area Primary

Derek Kilmer, a Gig Harbor Democrat who has represented Washington’s 6th district in Congress for a decade, will retire this fall. Influential Democrats are already taking sides on who should succeed him.

Kilmer has recommended Hilary Franz, the public lands commissioner, as his replacement. Franz has won statewide elections twice, in 2016 and 2020.

However, two Congresswomen, Marilyn Strickland and Marie Gluesenkamp-Perez, endorsed a different candidate last week: Emily Randall, a gay Latina and Bremerton state senator.

Senator Patty Murray of Washington endorsed Randall on Monday, as well.

According to political strategist Christian Sinderman, the senator is making an uncommon step.

“Definitely some lines are being drawn, with a lot of the women in leadership in our state lining up with state senator Randall,” she said.

Sinderman believes Randall is receiving these endorsements because she has demonstrated her ability to win against right-wing Republicans in Bremerton, a swing seat in the state Senate.

“[It’s] one of the few high-profile swing districts in the state of Washington,” she said.”And I think the fact that Emily has won election there twice speaks to, you know, her ability to connect with with a majority of voters — a clear majority of voters.”

Republican state Senator Drew MacEwen is also running.

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