May 26th, 2010
12:17 PM ET
8 years ago

Rossi makes it official

Dino Rossi jumped into the Washington state Senate Race Wednesday after months of urging from the GOP.

Dino Rossi jumped into the Washington state Senate Race Wednesday after months of urging from the GOP.

(CNN) - Two-time Republican gubernatorial candidate Dino Rossi officially jumped into the Senate race in Washington state Wednesday, following months of cajoling from national Republicans who view the area businessman as the strongest candidate to defeat incumbent Democrat Sen. Patty Murray.

"Over the past several months, as I watched Congress pile more and more debt on top of our children and grandchildren, as I watched them ram through a partisan, ill-conceived health care bill, as I watched them pass new job-killing taxes and regulations, I knew I had to do something about it," Rossi says in a web video. "That's why I've made the decision to run for the United States Senate."

Rossi, currently a commercial real estate investor, is arguably the best known Republican in Washington state, thanks to his two bids for governor. In an election that went into overtime, Rossi lost to Democrat Christine Gregoire by just a handful of votes six years ago. He was again defeated in a 2008 rematch by a wider margin.

Polls of Washington state voters conducted this year suggest that Rossi could be competitive with the three-term Murray - the so-called Senate "soccer mom" whose approval rating is hovering around 50 percent back home. But Murray is sitting on a formidable $6 million campaign war chest, according to disclosures filed with the Federal Elections Commission at the end of March, and handily won her reelection bids in 1998 and 2004.

Rossi, a former state senator, appears to be kicking of his campaign in the Democratic-leaning state with a message of inclusion, touting his record of working to balance the budget with both Republicans and Democrats.

"I did it by seeking out a fiscally conservative majority, rather than a partisan majority," he says in the video. "Now I want to help do the same thing in the other Washington."

But as Rossi enters the race, he is already facing fire from both the right and the left. Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin has endorsed another Republican running for the seat, Tea Party favorite and formal NFL player Clint Didier. Didier himself has attacked Rossi as a firmly entrenched member of the Republican establishment.

National Democrats also took aim at the newly-minted candidate Wednesday, circulating a memo to reporters that raises questions about Rossi's investments in foreclosed properties and his firm's failure to pay property taxes on a building it owned.

Filed under: 2010 • Dino Rossi • Washington State
soundoff (34 Responses)
  1. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    50% approval rating is good if you ask me. Removing incumbents won't be as easy as republicans think. The joke is on them.

    May 26, 2010 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  2. Dano

    Mr. Rossi:
    Did you also watch as the Republican-controlled Congress piled more and more debt on top of our children and grandchildren by passing tax cuts for the wealthy, and as they started a "pre-emptive" war against a nation on false pretenses that has cost us a trillion dollars and thousands of American lives, and as they rammed through a partisan, ill-conceived prescription drug bill, and as they passed new de-regulation of banking and investment industries that eventually led to the worst financial meltdown in US history since the Great Depression? If so, why didn't you feel the need to do something about it then?

    May 26, 2010 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  3. Mike

    I guess the debt that George Bush started was acceptable to Rossi.

    May 26, 2010 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  4. carlos

    enough with these repulsives, should be recycled

    May 26, 2010 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
  5. William

    This man is already a loser in this state.

    May 26, 2010 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
  6. kyle from ohio

    Great another person who only saw the ramming through a partisan, ill-conceived health care bill, or the passing of a new job-killing taxes and regulations. But blind to the surplus that was spent by the previous adm. 2 wars unpaid for, tax-credit unpaid for. Oh and of course you missed the tax-break all americans recieved this last tax period. so you only see what you want, and let the others eat cake.

    May 26, 2010 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  7. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    Same GOP old warmed over repeated slogans. Hasn't Rossi read the GOP's new website asking Americans what they want because they have no solutions and Rossi has just proven he doesn't. Rossi is just shooting the GOP in the foot just like Rand Paul.

    May 26, 2010 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  8. Sniffit

    What a lovely string of ideological partisan talking points designed to polarize the voters and avoid providing them with insight into whether you possess informed, fact-based, realistic and practical policy positions likely to result in solutions and progress.

    If you buy the kind of substanceless crap this guy is selling, regardless of party, you deserve the people you vote for, so stop complaining about incumbents.

    May 26, 2010 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  9. SocialismBad

    Kiss ANOTHER Senate seat goodbye DemocRATS!

    May 26, 2010 12:56 pm at 12:56 pm |
  10. Victim of GOP Taliban

    So we have Billionaire Meg Whitman trying to buy her way into the Senate...along with this real estate robber-baron. Billionaires and real estate speculator vultures are the future of the Republican Party? How pathetic.

    May 26, 2010 12:56 pm at 12:56 pm |
  11. Mike

    Sounds like another good candidate but face it, a jelly roll is better in elected office than a liberal.

    May 26, 2010 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  12. DIANA

    This man doesn't seem to know when to give up. He lost the second time around by a larger margin than he did the first time. You know the Republican's won't vote for him because he said he was willing to work with the Democrats.

    May 26, 2010 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  13. Roger

    Mike – Dino is a big Bush Jr. fan, they named the family dog Dubya after all.

    May 26, 2010 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  14. Ann Hauck, President, Council of Civic Assocs.

    Bill Nelson stated that the Military should take over the oil spill cleanup coordination and that the President needs to clean house at the Mineral Managment Service because the regulars were too cozy with BP. It is more than ironic that Nelson has been told for years about the failure of the Environmental regulatory agency managers to protect the wetlands of South Florida and to protect the Everglades and he stood idly by when staff level regulators were relieved of their duties when they raised legitimate concerns and issues regarding the failure of environmental regulatory agency managers to protect water quality in South Florida and the Everglades.

    May 26, 2010 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  15. geecee

    And if Presient Obama had not taken control of the declining economy and did what he felt was necessary to stop the recession from getting worse, where would we have been today? Can you say Depression?? Go ahead and blame the Democrats for the financial problems of this country, but I don't feel bad if your great, great grandkids can't afford to supersize their Happy Meal in 40 years. We needed to straighten out our economy NOW and couldn't wait until the "Party of No" got some common sense and finally saw the urgency of the situation. Future generations will NEVER be as poor as past generations were. Don't be crying over your great, great grandkids financial future. That is SO lame!!!

    May 26, 2010 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  16. Larry

    Let me help you with this Rossi, since you're not bright enough to tell the truth.

    Before Bush took office our national debt was $4.5 trillion. When he left it was $10 trillion. Bush added $5.5 trillion to the national debt thru two uselesss wars. Not to mention the loss of 5,000 american soldiers lives and 100,000 innocent Iraqi and Afghanistan lives.

    Bush added more to the national debt in 8 years than all the presidents put together did before him.

    And you lying Republicans talk about irresponsible spending? The Iraq and Afghanistan wars were for one purpose–to get Bush's and Cheney's cronies wealthy thru corrupt military contracts.

    You Republicans stand a better chance in November if you start telling the truth. We like to hear the truth.

    May 26, 2010 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  17. Brian - Seattle

    I live in Seattle and the general feeling is that he doesn't have a chance. Patty Murray is very popular here and for good reason.

    All politics is local and it already seems Rossi doesn't understand that. Running on a national "vote out the incumbents" campaign isn't going to work.

    @Dano above; Exactly.

    May 26, 2010 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  18. cspurgeon

    How many times does he have to lose before he goes gets a job. He is making a career out of running and losing??

    May 26, 2010 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  19. Anonymous

    So this guy couldn't find a job either. Mayba everyone unemployed should run for office. At least during the campaign someone will be paying for food, shelter ans transportation and win and the gravy train continues!

    May 26, 2010 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  20. Wisconsinite - Conservatives want to take their country back. Progressives want to move their country forward.

    So this two-time loser is the best the Grand Obstructionist Party can come up with??? Awwww . . . too bad. Looks like he's got another loss coming in his near future.

    "Over the past several months, as I watched Congress pile more and more debt on top of our children and grandchildren"

    Guess he was BLIND for the 8 previous years!!!

    May 26, 2010 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  21. Who Cares?

    Amazing just much money these ego-centric clowns waste in order to hold power. Two failed Governor tries so why not waste more millions so you can feel powerful.

    Rossi is utter trash.

    May 26, 2010 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  22. Ben S. Pauls

    Good luck, Rossi. Get those Obama sucking fiends out of DC.

    May 26, 2010 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  23. Marlene

    I hope a two time loser can't garner enough votes to beat patty Murray in the Nov. election. Patty Murray cares enough to try to be a part of the solution and promotes a dialog. The problem is the GOP "Party of NO" has never tried to listen or participate. Claim Mr. Rossi for a GOP'er, but please keep him out of the Senate. Marlene in Mich

    May 26, 2010 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  24. Lisa


    "I watched them pass new job-killing taxes and regulations"

    where is the tax increase??

    prove it, you idiot!!!!!!!!!

    May 26, 2010 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
  25. Sgt. USMC

    Here comes the answer to all of our problems? How old is this guy? Where was he during the bush regime? Must have been in training with the X-men, it takes a while to train a super hero.

    May 26, 2010 01:57 pm at 1:57 pm |
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