TEAM MEMBERS: Clare Van Hollebeke, Chair; Neil Shafer-Ross, Vice-Chair; Colin McMahon, Secretary; Larry McIntosh, Team Member; and Sharon Holt, Ex-officio.

Note from Clare Van Hollebeke to all future Endorsements Committee members: This is a historical report from our entire 2020 year serving on this committee. You are welcome to use this report as your handbook for your own Endorsements Committee. We hope it will be very helpful to you.

This report is based upon a collaboration of my notes throughout this year, Neil’s minutes, and conversations with Sharon Holt, Neil Shafer-Ross, Colin McMahon, and Larry McIntosh.

This is our second year on the committee, and I wanted to let all future Endorsements Committee members know that our committee was very lucky to have such a great group of volunteers who got along and worked together very well. We were respectful of each other’s opinions, listened to each other, and didn’t interrupt even though we didn’t always agree. We didn’t try to hijack the meetings or join this committee with a political agenda or bias other than wanting to elect great democrats in a
democratic way. We sometimes debated passionately but never argued or were mean spirited to each other. We represented different sides of our progressive and moderate progressive membership, so we felt that everyone in the 21st LD would know they had a voice on the committee.

We were a very easy going group, but whenever it applied, our committee seamlessly aligned with the 21st LD Bylaws and Rules, following the common courtesy and or customary practices, such as having enough members present for a quorum, making motions, debate, and votes. In most discussions, great care was taken to include everyone’s opportunity to be heard, such as ‘around the room comments’, to ensure balance and fairness for all.

If any of us were working on a candidate’s campaign or had a personal, material or financial interest in it, or had a bias towards any candidate, we understood that we would recuse ourselves from debating and voting on that particular candidate.

It was a very rewarding experience and we are very proud of the work we did, although extremely time consuming as we invested hundreds of hours in this committee. I wish the same type of experience for our future 21st LD Endorsements Committees. You will come away with a wealth of knowledge and experience, as we did.

One important thing to remember is that the Endorsements Committee job is to find the “best” candidates to recommend to our 21st general membership, for them to vote for or against on a 21st democratic endorsement. This is the “only” role the committee has. Our membership body depends upon us to do all this research and offer them direction on which way they should vote that is in the best interest of our 21st membership body. They know we work really hard on this committee and they can count on us. Our recommendations are non-binding to our membership, just as with any other committee with the 21st LD. But if we do our jobs really well and offer convincing recommendations backed with thorough analysis during our Slate presentation, we will get the majority of our recommendations through. That has been proven during these last two years.

Good luck to you all!
Clare V.H.

Regarding the candidates we reached out to for consideration of endorsement from the 21st LD:

We only reached out to Democrats, but for Non-Partisan races, we looked at candidates that we felt would align with the 21st the most.

As far as Judicial candidates, this was not an area they could discuss, as that would be inappropriate and against their code of ethics.

JANUARY 2020: Endorsements and Elections Committee Report

1st Meeting: Starbucks in Mukilteo, January 23rd

Orientation. Discuss process for this year. What roles our team members will serve. What we did last year. How we can improve this year. Our Goals.

Review our two digital 21st LD Questionnaires from last year which were for Judicial and Local. Also review Snohomish County Questionnaires and other LD’s Questionnaires. Start discussing what we like and don’t like about these Questionnaires.

Start to build our Questionnaires. We will have the following five Questionnaires this year: Judicial, County, Legislative, Congressional, and General.

Attendance: Clare, Neil, Colin, Larry, Sharon

FEBRUARY 2020: Endorsements and Elections Committee Report

2nd Meeting: Rosehill Community Center in Mukilteo, February 8th

Continue to review our two digital 21st LD Questionnaires from last year which were for Judicial and Local. Also review Snohomish County Questionnaires and other LD’s Questionnaires. Build our five
2020 21st LD Questionnaires.

We will also be able to create a PDF version for any candidate who is unable to access our digital Questionnaires.

Attendance: Clare, Neil, Sharon

3rd Meeting: Rosehill Community Center in Mukilteo, February 13th

Discussed access to Bar Polls and list of appropriate pronouns for our Questionnaires.

Continue to build our digital Questionnaires.

Attendance: Clare, Neil, Larry, Sharon

4th Meeting: Rosehill Community Center in Mukilteo, February 15th

Continue to build our digital Questionnaires. Use headers for all the different sections.

Neil and Colin discuss Secretary Duties.

We decide to have an ethical requirement for candidates to sign that they agree to, using the same format as Snohomish County Endorsements Committee on their 2020 Questionnaires. Failure to
adhere to this ethical requirement could mean rescission of their endorsement from the 21st LD. This came about because there were two candidates in Snohomish County we found out were managing
their campaigns in an unethical manner.

Attendance: Clare, Neil, Colin, Larry, Sharon

5th Meeting: Rosehill Community Center in Mukilteo, February 20th

Continue to build our digital Questionnaires.

Start to discuss Candidates to interview, our dates of availability for interviews, etc.

Clare, Colin and Neil to create spreadsheet for scheduling of candidates, times slots, dates, etc.

Attendance: Clare, Neil, Colin, Larry, Sharon

6th Meeting: Rosehill Community Center in Mukilteo, February 24th

Continue to build our digital Questionnaires. Finished Judicial and Congressional Questionnaires.

Colin is creating a spreadsheet of candidates, contact info, various dates of contact, dates of mailing of Questionnaires, dates of Questionnaires received digitally, etc., etc.

Attendance: Clare, Neil, Colin, Larry

Various Dates: Continued to do more edits via email and Zoom

7th Meeting: Rosehill Community Center in Mukilteo, February 27th

Finished editing all five digital Questionnaires and made necessary changes.

Attendance: Clare, Neil

February 28th: Questionnaires sent out by our secretary, Colin McMahon

APRIL 2020: Endorsements and Elections Committee Report

All of the following meetings are now on ZOOM due to the Covid 19 Pandemic and Governor Inslee’s Stay at Home, Stay Safe Orders.

April 10 & 12 – Clare work on Endorsements Committee, review Questionnaires and spreadsheet Calendar, email Endorsements Committee.

8th Meeting: ZOOM Endorsements Committee Meeting, April 14th

Verify scheduling with team for candidate interviews. We will offer most Mondays and Thursdays, some Saturdays, a Tuesday and Wednesday, with some morning appointments available, but most appointments for 4:30 pm and on.

Discuss Zoom venue.

Neil sending me final PDF Questionnaires to review.

New PDC printout to review.

We discuss again which candidates to invite to fill out our 21st LD Questionnaire.

Additionally, Colin, Sharon and Neil worked with Al Apodaca, our 21st Vice Chair and PCO Coordinator, regarding researching VoteBuilder, Google, candidate websites, and other sources, keeping track of the
filings with the PDC, FEC and SOS. This way we were able to find additional candidates we were interested in reviewing for endorsement.

Colin to schedule interviews per time-frames similar to SnoCo Endorsements Committee. We decide to schedule 30 minutes for Judicial candidates, 30-45 minutes for Legislative, 45 minutes to 1 hour for
Congressional and State, as needed. We are interested to hear what Rick Larsen has to share with us on what’s going on with the White House and Congress regarding this new Pandemic, supply chain issues, monies coming to the state and residents, Boeing, etc., and what his role is in all of this. We
offered the same time-frame to Jason Call, Marko Liias, and Gael Tarleton.

All of us to review the answers the candidates gave us on their uploaded digital Questionnaires before the candidate interviews, and come prepared with a minimum of two questions for each candidate during interviews.

We discussed in the interest of time this year since we had many more candidates running, we wouldn’t interview the Judicial candidates we interviewed last year that are running unopposed, unless their status changes.

Attendance: Clare, Neil, Colin, Sharon

Clare email team with action items discussed at meeting, April 15th

9th Meeting: ZOOM Endorsements Committee Meeting, April 16th

Reviewed our scheduling of candidates.

Clare decides to get a professional Zoom account for ease of use, with no limitation on times allowed online in meetings. Cost approximately $16 per month.

Attendance: Clare, Neil, Larry

Clare review all Questionnaires, April 17th

10th Meeting: ZOOM Candidate Interviews, April 18th

Candidate interviews start today. We will always open our Zoom room about 30 minutes earlier to allow all team members time to get on Zoom, discuss upcoming interviews, etc.

Our process will be: Ask each candidate to give us an introduction and opening statement, let us know what they’ve been working on, etc. Then a Q&A session, plus candidate closing statement if time allows. This is the same format that Snohomish County Endorsements Committee uses.

Attendance: Clare, Neil, Colin, Larry, Sharon

11th Meeting: ZOOM Candidate Interviews, April 30th

More candidate interviews today.

Discuss candidates’ status.

Discuss SnoCo Endorsements Committee decisions.

Attendance: Clare, Neil, Colin, Larry

MAY 2020: Endorsements and Elections Committee Report

12th Meeting: ZOOM Endorsements Committee Meeting, May 11th

Discussion of candidates interviewed.

Added more dates of availability to calendar to allow for new PDC filings.

Colin to book additional candidates for interviews.

So far Denny Heck and Steve Hobbs have not gotten back to us to schedule an interview.

Reviewed preliminary Slate from Snohomish County Endorsements Committee as a point of reference.

Attendance: Clare, Neil, Colin, Larry, Sharon

13th Meeting: ZOOM Candidate Interviews, May 12th

More candidate interviews today.

Endorsements Committee discussion of candidates interviewed.

Attendance: Clare, Colin, Larry, Sharon

14th Meeting: ZOOM Endorsements Committee discussion and voting on Slate, May 13th

Big day today, we start to vote on our 21st LD Slate. Excited to be this far along, but also a little anxious as we have so much more to do to be ready in time.

Attendance: Clare, Neil, Colin, Larry

15th Meeting: ZOOM Candidate Interviews, Endorsements Committee discussion and additional voting on Slate, May 14th

More candidate interviews today.

Attendance: Clare, Larry

16th Meeting: ZOOM Candidate Interviews, Endorsements Committee discusses, votes and finalizes Slate, May 16th

More candidate interviews today.

We still did not hear back from Denny Heck or Steve Hobbs.

Discussed Dick McManus non filing status.

Discussed single payer special rule regarding Rick Larsen, and process for suspending it with a 2/3 21st embrship majority vote. A motion from a member of our Endorsements Committee to recommend amending this special rule to our 21st membership, was seconded, voted on, and passed.

This year we decided on dividing our slates into various categories of candidates, issues, etc. In the interest of time, we moved any potential contentious race into its own slate, so it would not slow down our voting process for the other candidates. This is how we improved the process from the 2019 primary endorsements. Congressional District 2 was a good example of this.

This has been a lengthy and detailed process.
Now time for Neil and Clare to create the Slates.

Attendance: Clare, Neil, Colin, Larry, Sharon

Neil and Clare continue to work offline together on the Slates, up until the 21st LD membership voting on May 17th.

We are creating two 21st LD Slate documents via Google Docs, one is a summary of Slates, and the
other is the long detailed version of Slates. This long detailed version shows our recommendation for
each of the candidates we considered, our thoughts about each candidate, etc. The summary is used
for the overhead projector if needed while we pass out the long detailed version. I don’t even think we
used the summary this year since we were on Zoom for the meeting. This year we “shared” the long
detailed version on Zoom for everyone to read along together. In future, we should consider how
people with disabilities will have access to this on Zoom. I’m thinking hearing, sight or reading issues.
Perhaps one of us could read it aloud…?
Clare prepares Committee Process Summary for presentation of Slate on May 17th
***ZOOM 21st LD Membership Endorsements Voting on All Candidates, May 17th
Endorsements Committee Chair Clare Van Hollebeke and Vice-Chair Neil Shafer-Ross, give presentation
to 21st LD membership on the Endorsements Committees’ processes, including creating of
Questionnaires, selecting candidates to review and invite for an interview, our interviewing, debate
and voting processes, writing of the Slates, etc. Neil and Clare present the Slates to the 21st
membership for voting.
***ZOOM 21st LD General Membership Meeting and Voting on extra Endorsements. Endorsements
Committee makes recommendations, May 20th8
SEPTEMBER 2020: Endorsements and Elections Committee Report
17th Meeting: ZOOM Endorsements Committee Meeting, September 15th
We discuss, vote and add to Slate, two additional candidates.
We discuss our Endorsements Committee Recommended Budget and Donation Disbursements for
2020 General Election which we plan to present at the 21st general meeting tomorrow.
***ZOOM 21st LD General Meeting, Clare presents Endorsements Committee Recommended Budget
and Donation Disbursements for 2020 General Election, September 16th
Clare created a 5 page document with our recommendations, and submitted it to Sharon Holt for
approval to submit to the general membership.
This was voted on and approved by our 21st LD general membership today.
Note: This recommendation process could possibly be voted on during our next Re-org and added to
our 21st LD rules. It will need to be followed up on by our next 21st LD Chair.
Sharon Holt, 21st LD Chair and Clare Van Hollebeke, 21st Endorsements Committee Chair, represented
the 21st LD as liaisons, throughout the many meetings and hundreds of hours involved in
collaboratively working with the Snohomish County Endorsements Committee. We created and wrote
the various candidate questionnaires, interviewed many candidates throughout Snohomish County,
including some at the State and Federal level, and discussed, debated and voted on candidates, issues
and recommendations to the Snohomish County membership body. Michael Brewer was the Chair of
this committee, and there were liaisons representing all 7 of the Snohomish County LD’s.
Note: Every re-org, Snohomish County Endorsements Committee requests two Endorsements
Committee members from each of the 7 LD’s.