(By Staff Reports/Chewelah Independent)
Stuckart cites family health issues as reason for dropping out of race…
Two-term Spokane City Council President Ben Stuckart announced Tuesday, June 6, that he’s dropping out of the race for the U.S. Congressional seat in Washington’s 5th District. In a statement released, Stuckart cited “family health issues that have arisen over the last few weeks.”
Stuckart was running against Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers. The Spokesman-Review reported that Stuckart, a Democrat, raised $69,011.66 according to financial statements by the campaign in April. Stuckart said he is calling donors to see if they want their money returned.
“In my heart, I believed that I could represent the citizens of Spokane as Council President, run a people-first campaign against a member of Congressional leadership, and meet my obligations to my extended family. I now know that I simply cannot adequately fulfill my duties to each without a detriment to the whole,” Stuckart said in his statement.
Stuckart re-affirmed his commitment to his job as head of Spokane’s City Council and said recent poll numbers showed the people of Washington’s 5th Congressional district wanted change and believe healthcare is a basic human right. While not mentioning Cathy McMorris Rodgers in name, he did provide this swipe:
“…I am amused that the people of Eastern Washington completely get the irony when their six-term congresswoman talks about ‘draining the swamp.'”
Stuckart did not endorse another candidate currently in the race. The Spokesman-Review reported that Washington State University alumni Matthew Sutherland is the only other Democrat registered. Outgoing WSU chancellor Lisa Brown is rumored to be a potential candidate for the congressional seat as well.