WASHINGTON
     Nov. 6, 2012 Governor

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+Jay Inslee (D)
1,582,802
51.54%
Rob McKenna (R) 1,488,245
48.46%

3,071,047

Registration: 3,904,959.   
Plurality: 94,557 votes (3.08 percentage points).
 WA Sec. of State



Notes:
  Gov. Christine Gregoire (D) announced on June 13, 2011 that she would not seek a third term.  After an expensive contest, with spending by the campaigns and outside groups totaling more than $46 million, U.S. Rep. Jay Inslee (D) defeated Attorney General Rob McKenna (R) by about 3 percentage points in the Nov. 6 election.

Inslee had served in Congress representing CD-1 since his election in 1998; he also served one earlier term, being elected in 1992 to represent CD-4 in Eastern Washington, before being defeated in the 1994 Republican tide.  He had run for governor in 1996, finishing fifth in the blanket primary.  Prior to being elected to Congress he served in the state House and worked as an attorney.  Inslee formally announced his candidacy for Governor on June 27, 2011.  On Mar. 10, 2012 he announced his resignation from Congress, effective Mar. 20, to focus on his campaign.

McKenna was elected Attorney General in 2004 and re-elected in 2008.  Previously he served nine years on the King County Council; he was first elected in 1995 and re-elected twice.  Earlier he worked as an attorney.  He announced his candidacy for Governor on June 8, 2011.

Inslee and McKenna dominated the Aug. 7, 2012 blanket primary.  Inslee obtained 664,534 votes (47.13%) and McKenna 604,872 (42.90%).  Seven other candidates were on the ballot, all finished in low single digits.

Inslee and McKenna debated five times. Unusually, the first debate occurred before the primary:

June 13 - Association of Washington Business at Bing Crosby Theater in Spokane.

Aug. 29 - Washington State University Vancouver campus, broadcast on KATU.

Oct. 2 - Association of Washington State Hispanic Chambers of Commerce at Yakima Convention Center, KCTS9 and the Yakima Herald-Republican, broadcast on public TV and radio stations (1, 2).

Oct.11 - at KOMO TV studios in Seattle.

Oct. 16 - at KING 5 studios in Seattle.

McKenna was a strong nominee, but as a Republican he faced an uphill climb in Washington State. 
At the top of the ticket, President Barack Obama defeated Mitt Romney by 56.16% to 41.29% margin (14.87 percentage points).  The state's last Republican governor was John D. Spellman, elected in 1980. 

According to FollowTheMoney.org, the McKenna campaign raised total contributions of $13.8 million to $12.5 million for the Inslee campaign (>).
  The Seattle Times reported about $21 million in outside independent expenditures including almost $11.4 million by the Republican Governors Association and $9.2 miillion by Our Washington, about half of which came from the Democratic Governors Association.

 
Campaign Managers
:
Jay Inslee:  Joby Shimomura
\Shimomura "served Inslee in multiple capacities since 1996."  She returned to the political world after taking a hiatus for about five years to run a glass studio in Pioneer Square starting in 2005.  Chief of staff to U.S. Rep. Inslee for six years.  Ran Inslee's 1998 campaign for Congress .  Political director for Washington State Democrats, 1997.  Ran Inslee's 1996 campaign for governor.  Worked on a number of local campaigns in Washington State,  Volunteered on Norm Rice for Seattle Mayor.  Moved to Washington, DC in 1990 and worked as a press assistant to U.S. Rep. John Miller (R-WA).  Grew up in Seattle.

Rob McKenna:  Randy Pepple

(June 2011)  Chief of staff in the Attorney General's office, June 2009-June 2011.  President of Pepple Communications, Oct. 2007-May 2009.  CEO at Rockey Hill & Knowlton, Jan. 2004-Oct. 2007; senior vice president-public affairs at The Rockey Company/Rockey Hill & Knowlton.  Chief of staff to U.S. Rep. Rick White, 1995-99.  B.A. in political science from Univeraity of Washington, 1984.


See also:
Andrew Garber.  "Tab for governor's race: $46 million."  Seattle Times, Nov. 3, 2012.

Todd Bishop.  "Video: Rob McKenna tries to win the dork vote "Gangnam' style."  GeekWire, Oct. 10, 2012.

Associated Press.  "5 stations agree to air Oct. 11 gubernatorial debate."  The Daily Herald, Sept. 26, 2012.

Erik Smith.  "Jay Inslee Quits His Day Job to Run for Governor – Resigns Congressional Seat."  Washington State Wire,  Mar. 10, 2012.







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