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State Sen. Jean Berkey (D-38, Everett), who lost her race to Nick Harper—a progressive Democratic insurgent backed by labor, environmentalists and lefties who didn’t think Berkey was progressive enough—is trying to have the result thrown out.

As has been widely reported, Berkey was the subject of an evil-genius plot orchestrated by Democratic consultant Moxie Media that involved a Potemkin conservative political committee bashing Berkey from the right to drive the GOP vote, pinching her out in the top-two primary as Democratic votes went to Harper.

Berkey definitely deserves sympathy (the Moxie plot as outlined in a Public Disclosure Commission investigation was truly nefarious), but in waging her post-campaign campaign Berkey is revealing why Democrats lined up against her in the first place.

In a November 16 email exchange with Joe Waldron, lobbyist for Washington Arms Collecters and chair of the Gun Owners Action League, a gun rights political committee which endorsed Berkey, Berkey calls Harper a “gun control nut.”

I have a call in to Berkey.

Harper laughed when I told him about Berkey’s accusation. He says he owned a weapon, a hand gun, and had a concealed weapons permit when he was younger. (He was at the U.W. on NROTC scholariship at the time). He also says he grew up using rifles and guns with his dad and grandfather who were avid bird hunters.

He says he’s never been approached by a stakeholder on either side of gun control issues to take a position on a specific piece of legislation, but says he would never support “stripping away someone’s right to possess legal firearms.”

In his email exchange with Sen. Berkey, Waldron says Harper “didn’t even bother” to return a candidate questionairre.

The one piece of gun control legislation that comes up frequently in the state legislature is sate Sen. Adam Kline’s (D-37) assault weapons ban. I have a second call in to Harper to see where he stands on that. (The bill didn’t make it past a public hearing last session.)
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