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Governing the Evergreen State

Political Life in Washington

Edited by Cornell W. Clayton, Todd Donovan, and Nicholas P. Lovrich

Foreword by Sam Reed


Washington State’s populist roots still cultivate political mavericks. Governing the Evergreen State provides an updated and absorbing look at an ever-evolving state political and judicial system and presents intriguing case studies. Fresh discussions and analysis from legislators and academics across the state offer a springboard for further examination and discussion.

Charts / Notes / References / 266 pages (2018)


SKU: 978-0-87422-355-2 Categories: ,


Washington State is a place of political mavericks. Split tickets are a source of pride and independent voters outnumber Democrats and Republicans. Washington was first to have a voter-approved state Equal Rights Amendment, first to elect a woman as governor, and first to elect a Chinese-American to the position. Today, Washington’s open primary election system and voter registration process demonstrate it has not drifted far from its populist roots.

Governing the Evergreen State provides an absorbing look at an ever-evolving state political and judicial system and presents intriguing case studies. With chapters on interest groups, the constitution, the environment, media coverage, the court system, the legislature, political parties, changing demographics, and more, this volume updates the popular Governing Washington. Fresh discussions and analysis written by academics from universities across the state, a senator, a pollster, a newspaper reporter/blogger, a former chief justice of the state Supreme Court, and a court administrator offer a springboard for further examination and discussion.

Cornell W. Clayton is the director of the Thomas S. Foley Institute of Public Policy and Public Service at Washington State University, where he also serves as the Thomas S. Foley Distinguished Professor of Government. He has published widely in the areas of American politics, judicial politics, and constitutional law. Todd Donovan is a professor in the Department of Political Science at Western Washington University in Bellingham. His research areas include public opinion, electoral rules, representation, and direct democracy, and he has worked as an expert witness on election matters in state and federal courts. Nicholas P. Lovrich is Regents Professor Emeritus and a Claudius O. and Mary W. Johnson Distinguished Professor of Political Science at Washington State University. He served as the director of the Division of Governmental Studies and Services for more than three decades.

Charts / Notes / References / 272 pages (2018)



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Foreword         Sam Reed

Section I: Political Setting and Behavior

Chapter 1        Two Washingtons? Political Culture in the Evergreen State
Nicholas P. Lovrich, John C. Pierce, and H. Stuart Elway

Chapter 2        Elections in Washington
Todd Donovan

Chapter 3        Political Parties in the Evergreen State
Kevin Pirch

Chapter 4        Interest Groups in Washington
Clive S. Thomas and Richard Elgar

Chapter 5        Progressive Federalism: Washington State as a Protector of Civil Rights Progress?
Maria Chávez and Robin Jacobson

Chapter 6        The Washington Press and Politics: News Coverage in Changing Times
Sanne A. M. Rijkhoff and Jim Camden

Section II: Government Institutions

Chapter 7        Washington’s Constitution: The Politics of State Constitutional Interpretation
Cornell W. Clayton and Gerry Alexander

Chapter 8        Governing the Evergreen State: The State Legislature
Hans Zeiger and Sara Singleton

Chapter 9        The Governor and Other Statewide Executives
Carolyn N. Long and David Ammons

Chapter 10      Courts and the Judicial System
Michael F. Salamone and Carl McCurley

Chapter 11      Continuity and Change in Public Policy in Washington State
Steven D. Stehr, Season A. Hoard, and Christina M. Sanders

Chapter 12      Environmental and Natural Resource Policy in the Evergreen State
Ed Weber and Ellen Rogers



Additional information

Dimensions 6 x 9 in