Daugs eyes Appleton’s House seat

Bremerton City Councilwoman Leslie Daugs said she wants to run for the 23rd Legislative District seat now held by state Rep. Sherry Appleton.

Appleton previously announced her plans to retire at the end of her term in 2021.

Daugs was just elected to her fourth city council term, representing Bremerton’s District 2, after running unopposed in the November election. She filed with the Public Disclosure Commission to run as a Democrat for the 23rd District’s Position 1 last month.

The 23rd District represents North Kitsap, Central Kitsap, East Bremerton, and Bainbridge Island.

“I’ve always had political aspirations to move forward,” Daugs said about her decision to run. “I’ve always been thinking about moving forward politically and the 23rd (District) is where I live. Sherry Appleton’s seat’s always been the one that I’ve been eying.”

The only other candidate to file so far for the 23rd District is Tarra Simmons, a Democrat who has been endorsed by Appleton. According to pdc.wa.gov, Simmons has collected nearly $27,000 in campaign contributions thus far.

If Daugs said that if she were to win the seat, she would step down from her council position to fulfill her role in the 23rd District.

Daugs is currently the Council Vice President, Chair of the Audit Committee, member of the Kitsap Transit Board of Commissioners, Kitsap 911 Policy Board, Kitsap Regional Coordinating Council, Kitsap Community Resources Board of Directors, and an alternate to the West Central Local Integrating Organization.

The Bremerton native cites homelessness, affordable housing, public safety, public transit, and education as areas of focus if she were to be elected to the Legislature.

“I know some of the issues of concern in our area,” she said. “I’ve worked on some of those issues already. I’m just excited about this opportunity and look forward to the adventures ahead of me. I’m going to give it my darnedest. I know what it takes to get out there and win a campaign and I’m willing to get moving and do what it takes to win it.”

Three lawmakers serve the 23rd District in Olympia; Appleton, who will have been in the House of Representatives for 16 years following her departure at the end of her term in January, 2021; Rep. Drew Hansen, a Bainbridge Island Democrat; and Senator Christine Rolfes, also a Democrat from Bainbridge.

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