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Fri Apr 19, 2019, 02:05 PM

Speaker Chopp will step aside even if Dems haven't picked a successor

OLYMPIA — House Speaker Frank Chopp said Thursday he is still planning to “step aside” as leader shortly after the legislative session ends — even if a successor hasn’t been chosen.

Since the Seattle Democrat and longest-serving speaker in state history announced the timeline in November, it’s been presumed the 57-member Democratic caucus would settle on a replacement when Chopp departs.

Now, with the session scheduled to end April 28, some are concerned it’s too soon to act. They want to ensure there is adequate time for each person to be able to meet with candidates and the caucus to deliberate before a decision is made.

They are willing to wait until September when representatives will be in Olympia for the House’s scheduled committee days.

“I’ve heard some people are trying to figure it out. If the caucus decides to do it later, that’s okay. It doesn’t matter to me,” he said. “I’m stepping aside a few days after we’re done here.”

There may be a discussion next week to figure out dates for the selection, he said.


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