Ask Rob McKenna a question on public policy, and you will have to sit still and listen closely. You are about to be flooded by pertinent observations, details, cause and effect, history, strategy, potential. Concentrate, because you might miss something.
There will be no words for the sake of words. There will be little or nothing that’s irrelevant or dishonest. Listen, and you might find something with which you disagree, but that’s just more to think about. The overwhelming impression is that you are speaking with someone who has a keen grasp of the issues, a breadth of knowledge, an analytical mind capable of reason and judgment. He also possesses the kind of energy and skills that will lead to accomplishment, not to partisanship and all its dead ends.
Rob McKenna is the best qualified candidate to be the next governor of Washington. This is based not on party labels or ideology, but on observation and the conclusion that he is the candidate best equipped to succeed.
For whoever wins the office, it will not be simple or easy. We have appreciated Democrat Jay Inslee for his political acumen and dedication since he represented us in Congress 20 years ago. Speaking with him recently, we find little has changed. He’s still Jay Inslee, with all the fire and desire. Republican McKenna, in contrast, doesn’t often paint with the broad brush of a legislator. He sounds like an executive, a manager, and with eight years as state attorney general, that is what he is. Even if we sometimes forget, that is what Washington’s governor is.
In that role McKenna is a proven performer, managing the state’s largest law firm while pushing hard on issues like transparency in government, prevention of domestic violence, prevention of consumer fraud, stemming gangs, fighting methamphetamines and identity theft. This is not to mention shepherding complex legislation or successfully arguing for the state’s voters before the United States Supreme Court (in opposition to his party’s wishes).
McKenna is well known for traveling the state to meet with people, the press and his employees. He knows the issues of Central Washington, speaks fondly of his early working days in the mountains outside Wenatchee, speaks passionately about the power of the mighty Columbia and all its benefits. Inslee too is a friend of Eastern Washington. We will not be forgotten by our next governor. But the choice is now before us, and McKenna fills it best.
This is the opinion of The Wenatchee World and its Editorial Board: Publisher Rufus Woods, Editor Cal FitzSimmons and Editorial Page Editor Tracy Warner.