House Transportation Committee Chair Judy Clibborn (D-Mercer Island) has issued the following statement in response the Senate’s vote against the confirmation of WSDOT Secretary Lynn Peterson:
“Today the Senate voted down the confirmation of WSDOT Secretary Lynn Petersen, three years after being nominated by Governor Jay Inslee.
This move comes after strong leadership from Secretary Peterson under very challenging circumstances. It comes after the Senate Transportation Committee unanimously approved her nomination. It comes after decades of latitude granted to Governors of both parties to select the leaders of their agencies.
If there was any doubt remaining, it should be clear now – hardline, D.C.-style gridlock has arrived in our Washington.
After reaching a bipartisan agreement to invest $16 billion in our transportation system just a session ago, it is shocking and deeply troubling to see Senate Republicans undermine that work by removing the head of agency responsible for carrying it out.
Critical traffic relief, thousands of Washington jobs, and the health and wellbeing of our economy are being put at risk for motives that can only be described as partisan.
Senate Republicans have put their political frustrations above the needs of the people of Washington. Lynn Peterson is the scapegoat for their inability to dictate policy to the rest of our divided government, and the businesses and commuters of Washington will suffer because of their actions.”