'Pflug' becomes Republican profanity after endorsing Democrat, criticizing Dino Rossi
By CELESTE GRACEY
Issaquah Reporter Staff Writer
July 12, 2012 · Updated 1:16 PM
Washington state Republican leadership has abandoned retired Sen. Cheryl Pflug, after she simultaneously endorsed a Democrat for her seat and criticized the decision to name Dino Rossi as the position’s caretaker through the election.
"After she did what she did, Republicans started using 'Pflug' as a profane verb," said Kirby Wilbur, head the Republican party.
Pflug quit her re-election campaign the day after candidate filings closed, giving little opportunity for a strong Republican to take her seat. She retired to take a $92,000 appointment from Gov. Christine Gregoire.
She’s now criticizing the Republican candidate that hoped to challenge her, Brad Toft, over accusations from his former employees.
“She’s working hard to burn some bridges with the party,” Toft said. “I don’t think this recent outburst has much to do with my campaign.”
She is so opposed to the Republican's support of Toft, she endorsed Democrat Mark Mullet, who recently spearheaded a bag ban in Issaquah, citing his experience as a small business owner and Issaquah City Council member.
Mullet, who considers himself a moderate, received the endorsement, saying, "I believe the citizens of Washington are always best served when they vote for the best candidate, not just their own political party."
Pflug's hope was that instead of choosing Rossi, Republicans would have chosen someone who could conduct a write-in campaign against Mullet, she told The Reporter.
Her accusation is that Republican leadership pushed for Rossi to prevent a successful write-in from challenging Toft. They chose instead to put "the proverbial lipstick on a pig," she said.
Wilbur disagreed with her accusations, saying Rossi is a good choice, especially considering that he doesn’t plan to run for reelection.Rossi served as a senator in the 5th District before he stepped down to run for governor. Pflug was then appointed to his seat, where she served 13 years.
Rossi won’t have the opportunity to vote in Olympia during his short tenure, unless the governor calls a special session.
Pflug “operated in the most harmful and dishonorable way I’ve seen in politics in a long time,” Wilbur said. “She’s got a secure government job. She should just go away.”Contact Issaquah Reporter Staff Writer Celeste Gracey at email@example.com or 425-391-0363.