Lambert will run for council position this fall

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SNOQUALMIE VALLEY - Metropolitan King County Councilwoman Kathy Lambert will be running for re-election this fall following a redistricting of county lines that shuffled boundaries and put every council position up for election.

Lambert, who took office in 2001 after serving as a state representative in the 45th Legislative District since 1995, made the announcement last week. She is one of two council members (the other is David Irons) who live in the newly designated District 3 that was created following a voter-approved plan that reduced the number of districts in the county to nine from 13.

The Snoqualmie Valley will remain in the new District 3, which also includes Sammamish, Issaquah, parts of Woodinville and Redmond and the whole northeastern part of King County.

District 3 will also have the highest number of rural residents, 13,466, of any of the new districts.

All council positions will be up for election this fall. Lambert currently represents District 3 and Irons represents District 12, which were basically split between the new District 3 and new District 9.

Lambert said rural representation will be her foremost campaign issue this fall. Rural residents, especially in the county's unincorporated areas, have been agitated by recent moves made by the Democratic-led council. Last fall's Critical Areas Ordinance (CAO), a group of regulations that restricted development, was seen by many as the tipping point for a council that holds the interests of urban Democrats higher than rural landowners.

"The question is, how are we going to work with DDES [Department of Development and Environmental Services]," Lambert said.

Democrats in King County have no plans to back down and are preparing to field a candidate in every County Council district. Suzie Sherry, chair of the King County Democrats, said there will be meetings in coming weeks to brainstorm strategies and potential candidates. There is no front runner for the District 3 race yet, but Sherry said finding a good candidate for the rural area will not be an impossible task.

Lambert has never run for re-election for her council position, but Democrats know she should be a formidable opponent. This will be her sixth time running for public office and she has never lost an election in Washington. The only time she ever lost a race was for a school board position in California in 1975.

"We have our work cut out for us," Sherry said.

Irons still has not announced whether he will run or not. Lambert said that if he should run against her for the Republican slot, the race would be a cordial one.

"We are very, very good friends," she said. "It would not be an ugly race at all.

Lambert will have a meeting next month to kick off her campaign. She said she will have many of the same supporters she has had behind her in previous elections.

"I don't intend to lose," Lambert said.

Editor Ben Cape can be contacted at (425) 888-2311 or by e-mail at

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