5th District Dems name challengers

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SNOQUALMIE VALLEY - Democrats in the state's 5th District have promised challengers to all three state legislative seats now held by Republicans that are up for election this fall.

Last week, Sammamish Mayor Kathy Huckabay announced her candidacy for Democratic State Senator in the 5th Legislative District. She will be running against Cheryl Pflug (R-Maple Valley), who was appointed to the seat earlier this year after Sen. Dino Rossi stepped down last year to run for governor.

Huckabay is a Chicago native who moved around with her husband before coming to Issaquah in 1984 and becoming an accountant. She was a city representative to the Eastside Fire and Rescue Board, the Puget Sound Regional Council Executive Board, the Economic Development District Board and the Suburban Cities Management and Policy Board. She has also served as a member of the Issaquah Planning Commission and on the boards for the Sammamish YMCA, Eastside Legal Assistance Program, the Puget Sound Council of Investment Clubs and the Sammamish Kiwanis Club.

When Sammamish incorporated in 1999, she served two terms on the City Council and chaired the city's Finance and Community Development committees before later being appointed to mayor.

"As I talk with people as a city representative, parent, business person or friend, the most common complaint that I hear is that no one in Olympia cares about the needs of the 5th District. They don't see our key issues - excellent schools, congestion relief on our highways, or health care - being addressed," Huckabay said in a press release.

In January, Barbara de Michele of Issaquah announced she was running against State Rep. Glenn Anderson (R-Fall City). She was born in Seattle and was raised in Spokane. She moved to Issaquah 19 years ago and has served on numerous community organizations such as the Issaquah Arts Commission and Greater Issaquah Youth and Family Network. De Michele is presently a community relations planner for the King County Department of Transportation and served for 8 years on the Issaquah School District Board of Directors.

"The Eastside faces two huge challenges, ensuring that our children continue to get an excellent public education and reducing the incredible toll traffic congestion is placing on our quality of life," she said in a press release. "Through my personal and professional life I have developed a deep understanding of both these issues that make me uniquely qualified to serve the people of the 5th District."

Jay Rodne, a former Snoqualmie City Councilman who was appointed to fill Pflug's vacancy, will be up for re-election this fall as well. Fifth District Democratic Chair Tom Vance said his party hopes to have a challenger to Rodne announced in the next couple of weeks.

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