Musings - On the editor's mind


March 13, 2024

I can’t believe anyone assessing the results of Washington’s presidential primary today and throughout this week will be surprised. Actually, there is one vote tally that is not certain: the total for uncommitted delegates in the Democratic primary. There was no organized campaign that I was aware of, as in Michigan two weeks ago, but the same opportunity for people of conscience insisting on an end to the destruction of the Palestinian people in Gaza had existed for registered Democrats and any resident willing to use her ballot to send this message: No. No, we do not want our hands bloodied by the weapons American tax dollars buy. We will not be responsible for the killing by the Israeli military and vigilantes. The war must stop now.

In Minnesota 18.9% of Democratic voters supported 11 uncommitted delegates while President Biden only received 70.7% of the vote in their March 5 primary. Organizers there had less than a week after Michigan to make their case. The result was a significant anti-war vote.

That is why I voted in the Democratic primary last week, so I could check uncommitted delegates. I am not a member of the Democratic Party and was not going to vote. I had not thought to use my ballot to send Biden a message until Maggie Wilder stopped by the office and our conversation turned to our election and the horror and tragedy of the Israeli onslaught.

I have never voted for Democratic candidate for president. Nor have I voted for a Republican one. I also try to refrain from election discussions till September. But my vote in the primary was an important decision, one I did not come to lightly.

What effective action can I take next against the Israeli invasion? I did not write U.S. Senators Maria Cantwell or Patty Murphy. Too late. Both voted for the $14.1 billion for weapons for Israel when the foreign aid bill passed 70-29 Feb. 13. Only two Democrats, Oregon’s Jeff Merkley and Vermont’s Peter Welch voted no, as did Sen. Bernie Sanders, an Independent. Twenty-six Republican senators voted no, as urged byformer President Donald Trump, to deny aid to Ukraine.

Writing and calling U.S. Rep. Rick Larsen to urge a no vote is worthy work. Legislation has not come before the U.S. House of Representatives. Leaning on Larsen is a noble but likely futile effort. In 2022-2023 he received $10,000 from AIPAC, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, while he was on the Armed Services Committee. That was the largest contribution to any Washington representative.

Contact his Washington office: 202-225-2605; email via:


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