Labor groups hosting new 1st Congressional District candidate forum in Everett, March 23

The Washington State Labor Council and the AFL-CIO Central Labor Councils are hosting a candidate forum in the newly drawn 1st Congressional District in northwest Washington from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Friday, March 23.

The forum will be held at the Everett Machinists Union Hall, located at 8729 Airport Road in Everett.

The new district contains a large portion of Whatcom County, including the cities of Ferndale, Blaine, Lynden, Everson, Nooksack and Sumas. It also contains large swaths of Skagit, Snohomish and King counties.

All the candidates in the 1st District 2012 election race have been invited to participate in the forum. Those who have accepted invitations include Democrats Darcy Burner, Suzan DelBene, state Rep. Roger Goodman, state Sen. Steve Hobbs, Darshan Rauniyar, Laura Ruderman and independent Larry Ishmael.

Republican John Koster has yet to announce plans to attend, according to a March 21 labor council press release.

The labor council has said the new district was deliberately redrawn to create a “swing” district, with equal parts Democratic and Republican voters.

Redistricting commissioner Slade Gorton said the district “may easily be the most evenly divided congressional district in the United States of America,” according to the labor council’s press release.

The forum, which will be moderated by Enrique Cerna of KCTS 9-TV, is also sponsored by the M.L. King County Labor Council, the Northwest Washington Central Labor Council and the Snohomish County Labor Council.

The Washington State Labor Council is online at www.wslc.org.

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