Republicans congregate at Homestead Park on Mercer Island

While most legislative candidates — including Mercer Island’s own Steve Litzow — were out “doorbelling” in the 90-degree heat, other politicians vying for various federal, congressional and judicial seats spoke to hundreds of picnickers at the King County Republican Party Family Picnic.

“Most of our candidates have hit 10,000-plus homes this year,” said Chairperson Lori Sotelo.

A total of 17 candidates either attended, sent a campaign representative, or had a booth at the afternoon affair including senatorial candidates Paul Akers, Clint Didier and Dino Rossi; congressional candidates James Watkins and Dave Reichert; Washington State Legislative candidates Glenn Anderson (5th LD), Diane Tebelius (48th LD), Philip Wilson (48th LD), Kevin Haistings (45th LD), Mark Isaacs (45th LD) and Peter Dunbar (45th LD); Washington State Senate candidates Gregg Bennett (48th LD), Andy Hill (45th LD) and Litzow (45th LD); and King County District Court N.E. Electoral District candidates Michael Finkle (Position 6), Donna Tucker (Position 7) and Ketu Shah (Position 7).

Rossi was among the candidates to speak at the gathering, which ran from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday at Homestead Park on Mercer Island.

“What Washington, D.C., needs is some adult supervision,” he said to a loud clap of applause.

While the audience of roughly 500 did its best to stay cool on the shaded hillside — and many attendees brought their dogs — children disregarded the heat and bounced to their hearts' content in two inflatable bouncy houses on the lawn.

A dozen or so candidate booths with banners and flags offered candidate information and encouraged supporters to back the campaigns.

For more information about the King County Republican Party, call (425) 990-0404, e-mail, visit the King County Republican Party office at 845 106th Ave. N.E. #110 in Bellevue, or go to

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