Once upon a time, Washington County was impossible territory for Democrats. Today, there are only three Republicans out of ten seats that include portions of Washington County (district map).
If Democrats are going to build toward a majority, holding those seats is a crucial task in 2006. But, as suggested in WW's Murmurs column last week, State Representative Mark Hass has declined to run for reelection in HD 27. From his announcement:
Representative Mark Hass (D-Raleigh Hills) announced Monday that he will not seek a fourth term in the Oregon House of Representatives. ... Hass, 48, first won election to the House in 2000. The time has come for him to return to private life and focus on his family, he said. “My daughter, Isabelle, is seven years old and in no time at all she’ll be seventeen. I don’t want to miss that.” ...
Hass recently joined the Cappelli Miles Wiltz Kelly firm in Portland. The 25-year-old Portland-based firm is a brand-development and advertising agency with offices in Eugene and Denver. Hass is director of marketing and public relations.
Rumors out of Washington County are aplenty that a strong Democratic candidate will file for the seat later this week.