May 15, 2008

Another House Member Will Step Down

By Randy Hodgins

Just last week I wrote about Rep. Shirley Hankins (R-Richland) announcement that she would not run for re-election this November to her 8th district seat.  At the time, Hankins was the 10th member of the lower chamber to announce they were not coming back to Olympia.

Well, make that eleven.  In an announcement yesterday that stunned the local Yakima political establishment, Rep. Mary Skinner (R-Yakima) who has represented the 14th district (Yakima, Union Gap, Selah and Naches) since 1995 is calling it quits after this term.  According to the Yakima Herald, her departure, coming less than a month before the June 6 filing deadline has left both parties scrambling to find replacements.

Skinner was diagnosed with colon cancer in 2006 but recently told supporters that her cancer was in remission and she was planning to run for re-election.  According to her written statement, health was not a factor in her decision not to seek re-election. The Yakima Herald also reports that Yakima mayor Dave Elder (a former member of the Seattle Mariners) is considering a run for Skinner’s seat.

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