Ross: Is King County the GOP’s nemesis?

Nov 11, 2022, 11:13 AM | Updated: 11:13 am
king county...
Sen. Patty Murray on a campaign stop in Seattle. (Photo by Lindsey Wasson/Getty Images)
(Photo by Lindsey Wasson/Getty Images)

As Danny Westneat pointed out in The Seattle Times this week, once again, it was King County that spoiled Republican chances to pick up a Senate seat.

And I’ve heard that a lot over the years, the lament that “if it wasn’t for King County, we would have won easily” – the implication being that it’s unfair that a conservative candidate has to find a way to appeal to all those King County liberals.

And when you look at the Washington map divided into red and blue counties, it DOES seem unfair. The Red looks like it could swallow the Blue in one gulp.

And when you look at a map of the WHOLE COUNTRY divided into red and blue counties – yikes! You wonder how there could be any Democrats in Congress at all!

But the problem with maps like that is they only make sense if land … could vote.

It’s only in the U.S. Senate that land can vote.  For example, Washington State has more people than the states of Wyoming, Vermont, Alaska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Delaware, Rhode Island, and Montana COMBINED. But collectively, those eight states get 16 senators, and we get TWO.

THAT’s what’s unfair.

King County tipping elections – is completely fair. Because in general elections, it’s PEOPLE that vote, not land. And King County has the most people.

More from Ross: Now’s the time to look for a better candidate for future elections

It dominates Washington politics because it should. For the same reason, it takes longer to stop a freight train than a Mini Cooper. It’s bigger.

And while we’re at it – let’s take a look at this idea that liberal politics has made King County a terrible place to live. If that’s true, why does it keep growing?

It is NOT cheap to live here. Who spends that kind of money to live in a terrible place? No one. Because it’s not a terrible place.

I think some of the anger is because this place is TOO attractive, which has pushed prices so high that people who once COULD afford to live here no longer can.

But – conservatives should be the last group to complain about that – because that’s how markets work: demand pushes prices up.

Bottom line – it’s not some fundamental unfairness that requires politicians to appeal to King County if they want to get elected – it’s the way the system is designed.

And the beautiful part is that we have freedom of movement in this country so that people can vote with their feet as well as with their ballots.

Many of them do – which is why Snohomish and Pierce Counties are ALSO growing. And if that continues – politicians will have to kowtow to THEM someday – as they should.

Listen to Seattle’s Morning News with Dave Ross and Colleen O’Brien weekday mornings from 5 – 9 a.m. on KIRO Newsradio, 97.3 FM. Subscribe to the podcast here.

Dave Ross on KIRO Newsradio 97.3 FM
  • listen to dave rossTune in to KIRO Newsradio weekdays at 5am for Dave Ross on Seattle's Morning News.

Dave's Commentary

Dave Ross

Thanksgiving dinner...
Dave Ross

Ross: How to keep your Thanksgiving peaceful this year

I know Americans define Thanksgiving as a holiday to remind us all why we moved away from our relatives. But it doesn't have to be that way.
4 days ago
Dave Ross

Ross: Could planes only have one pilot someday?

Just one pilot in the cockpit. That would free up more pilots to compensate for crew shortages, and of course, save money.
4 days ago
Dave Ross

Ross: Want to solve holiday travel? Just live closer to your family

The answer to solving holiday travel is always the same – the best time to fly is when nobody else is flying.
5 days ago
young voters...
Dave Ross

Ross: Young voters are key to Democrat wins, if they can get a high turnout

It said that young voters “delivered on President Joe Biden’s hopes they would turn out in the mid-terms,” and that voters under 30 were key.
6 days ago
Seattle roadside graffiti...
Dave Ross

Ross: Graffiti along the ‘gateway to Seattle’ is embarrassing

Time to put this graffiti out of its misery. Painting it over doesn't work. So, I'll say it again: put up artificial vegetation.
9 days ago
Same-sex marriage...
Dave Ross

Ross: Politicians now have one less thing to fight about

The same-sex marriage debate has been ugly, but it’s that tension that makes a compromise like the Respect for Marriage Act stand out.
10 days ago

Sponsored Articles


Medicare open enrollment is here and SHIBA can help!

The SHIBA program – part of the Office of the Insurance Commissioner – is ready to help with your Medicare open enrollment decisions.
Lake Washington Windows...

Choosing Best Windows for Your Home

Lake Washington Windows and Doors is a local window dealer offering the exclusive Leak Armor installation.
Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
Work at Zum Services...

Seattle Public Schools announces three-year contract with Zum

Seattle Public Schools just announced a three-year contract with a brand-new company to the Pacific Northwest to assist with their student transportation: Zum.
Swedish Cyberknife 900x506...

June is Men’s Health Month: Here’s Why It’s Important To Speak About Your Health

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, men in the United States, on average, die five years earlier than women.
Ross: Is King County the GOP’s nemesis?