Democrats plan for more education funding
By Izzy Anderson - Staff Reporter
With Democrats sweeping the 30th district seats, the state House and Senate will continue to fight for affordability of, and access to, local colleges, local Legislators say.
The election results came in last Tuesday night, where Democrats won both the state House seats, and the state Senate seat in the 30th district, which includes Federal Way.
Rep. Kristine Reeves defended her seat as state representative for another term, beating Republican Mark Greene.
Rep. Mike Pellicciotti also was re-elected, defeating Linda Kochmar.
Claire Wilson defeated incumbent Republican State Senator Mark Miloscia.
In Washington state, 25 seats were up for grabs, and 98 House seats.
Rep. Reeves said that her return as a member of the Washington House of Representatives "means that you're sending a pro- education, working mom back to Olympia." Her focal point at the moment is ensuring that college students don't need to graduate with college debt weighing them down.
"It means things like making sure that the safety grant still exists. ...It means making sure that we're not burdening the next generation with so much college debt," Rep. Reeves said.
Rep. Pellicciotti said that his main focus is also supporting funding for South King County colleges.
"Rep. Reeves and I have been working tirelessly for Highline College, and other higher education [institutions] throughout South King County," he said.
Rep. Pellicciotti is also focused on advocating for government reform. "As one of the only members of the election major who have never accepted corporate money, I focus a lot on government reform and making sure the government is being best represented," he said.
With Wilson joining the state Senate, reaching out for proper funding and distribution of funds for higher education could also be easier, Legislators said.
"Adding Claire Wilson to our team makes it that much easier for us to support that [college funding]," Rep. Pellicciotti said.
Wilson said that the moments leading up to her win were nerve- wracking.
"The 10 minutes in between 8 o'clock and 8:10, were the longest 10 minutes of my life," Wilson said.
Wilson plans to pursue the fight for affordable education.
"The hope is, No. 1, they [students] can do it and it's affordable or free," Wilson said.
"We've got to invest in people and invest in programs that will bring the change that we hope for," she said.