I am forever grateful for the support you have shown me during my 14 years in the State Senate and decades in uniform. When I launched this campaign for Lt. Governor, it was with a deep appreciation for all we have accomplished and the confidence that you have always had my back.
In a short amount of time, we built impressive resources and support. I thank Governor Gary Locke and Lt. Governor Brad Owen for their early endorsements, along with our state’s critical trade unions, law enforcement officials and public school employees.
Our team was prepared to share the story of the son of a Japanese immigrant, a young man who enlisted in the Army out of high school, and an elected official who focused his service on championing the interests of working-class families and bringing common sense to state policy.
But, like so many people responding to this crisis, my plans have changed.
My original orders to be on duty until May 9 have been extended through the summer. Leading hundreds of our state’s Soldiers and Airmen in response to this pandemic, we have processed more than 11 million pounds of food, providing more than 9 million meals for Washingtonians in need, and have now begun implementing the state’s contact tracing program.
For this reason, I have made the decision to withdraw from the 2020 campaign for Lt. Governor to focus on the work of Task Force Olympic.
I will continue to proudly serve the residents of the 44th Legislative District in the State Senate. As Chair of the Senate Transportation Committee, I am collaborating with colleagues and stakeholders to redouble our efforts to pass an ambitious package to put Washingtonians back to work and get our economy moving, while making progress on our shared environmental goals.
You and I will connect about this decision and my plans for the future, but I do ask for your patience. We have work to do to restore our state during this crisis. That includes electing pragmatic Democrats this fall and building an agenda that enables our businesses to thrive in our new reality and our communities to heal.
My very best to you and your families,