VANCOUVER, Wash. (Feb. 23, 2016) — The Washington State Labor Council, AFL-CIO — the state’s largest union organization representing the interests of more than 600 labor organizations with more than 450,000 members — has endorsed Tim Probst, Democratic candidate for State Senate in the 17th District. The WSLC Executive Board took the early endorsement action at its February meeting, citing Probst’s outstanding qualifications and experience, plus the need to restore a pro-working family majority in the increasingly partisan, dysfunctional Senate.
“Tim Probst is a proven leader and exactly what Olympia desperately needs right now,” said WSLC President Jeff Johnson. “Senate Republican leaders have introduced D.C.-style shutdown threats and partisan gamesmanship to Olympia. Now more than ever, we need senators like Tim Probst who want state government to work properly and efficiently, not partisan ideologues who deliberately sow dysfunction for political gain.”
“This (endorsement) means a lot to me,” Probst said. “The history of the labor movement is a history of courage. It’s the history of the underdog standing tough and winning against the odds. I’ve had to show some courage in my career, as well, and knowing the labor movement has my back is inspiring. Together we’re going to accomplish great things — let’s start by raising the minimum wage in 2016!”
Probst is the first candidate the WSLC has recommended for the 2016 elections. The organization’s 2016 political endorsement convention, where delegates representing unions from across the state will vote on which candidates have earned labor’s support, will be May 21. But with the importance of the 17th LD Senate race and the announcement by Sen. Don Benton (R-21st) that he will not seek re-election, the Southwest Washington Central Labor Council urged the WSLC board to take action at its February meeting. The Board voted unanimously to endorse Probst.
Probst served two terms as a State Representative for the 17th Legislative District. In 2012, he gave up his House seat to run for the Senate against Don Benton. Outspent by more than $200,000 against the 18-year incumbent senator, Probst lost by 78 votes after multiple recounts.
“Tim Probst has always been a champion for working families,” said Shannon Walker, President of the SW Washington CLC. “He has a record unwavering support of not only his Vancouver community but for all working people in the State of Washington. We are proud to have his back!”
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