The Daily Troll: Extension on health insurance applications. March on union office. Second-guessing on legislative pick.

Pastor Ken Hutcherson dies.

Skosh more time on health insurance

The Washington Health Benefit Exchange is giving residents an extension on applying for health insurance, as long as they get the process started by Monday. The extension targets folks who have had trouble getting on to the exchange or making their choices — a common problem nationally, though somewhat less so here. To have coverage begin on Jan. 1, applicants must apply by Dec. 23. But the extension gives people until Jan. 15 to finish their applications and make payments. Details and advice on how to use the extension can be found here.

A Boeing 'display' 

A march on the Machinists union office in Everett — to demand a vote on a Boeing contract offer — drew about 45 people, according to The Puget Sound Business Journal. District 751 officials have rejected the contract and it's not clear whether Boeing would honor the contract proposal, even if the union suddenly approved. The international Machinists leadership, which is at odds with District 751 on the issue, said the march is a "public display" designed to draw attention to the cause. But 45 people?

Legislative pick fallout

The King County Council is getting grief from Democratic activists over the selection of Mia Gregerson to fill a state House of Representatives vacancy for south King County's 33rd Legislative District, because she finished second in the voting by party precinct committee officers. The council is free to select any of the top three nominations from a party's district organization but the nod usually goes to the first choice. The Kent Reporter has a statement from the district Democrats' chair expressing support for Gregerson but complaining that the vote was hurried and there wasn't enough opportunity for discussion. County Councilmember Kathy Lambert tells the Reporter that Gregerson's work on regional issues as deputy mayor of SeaTac, along with her answers during an interview were more impressive than those of first pick Elizabeth Albertson, a Kent City Council member. 

Pastor, ex-Hawk dies

Ken Hutcherson, a former Seahawk and prominent opponent of gay marriage, has died at age 61 after a battle with prostate cancer, The Seattle Times reports. He served as senior pastor and co-founder of Antioch Bible Church in Kirkland. 

Mukilteo student charged in Harvard bomb scare

A student who graduated from Mukilteo's Kamiak High School has been charged with the bomb threat that closed parts of Harvard University's campus on Monday. An email threat led the university to shut down four campus buildings just as Eldo Kim, 20, was about to take his Politics of American Education final in one of them. The Seattle Times reports that Kim, who graduated from Kamiak high in June 2012, was a National Merit Scholarship finalist and was active on debate and tennis teams. Sad.

Ivar's explains it all!

Ivar's restaurant chain (which has not always been, ahem, strictly factual in its promotional efforts) has a possible "explanation" for the problems facing the Seattle waterfront tunnel in a press release that begins: "Ivar’s records and historical anecdotes reveal restaurant 'flounder' Ivar Haglund bred an oversized 'proto-clam.' Ivar’s mysterious pet was a prized possession spotted around town until it abruptly disappeared in 1937 when Haglund moved his Seattle aquarium from Harbor Avenue in West Seattle to Pier 3 (now Pier 54). Legend has it the 70-foot shellfish fell off a truck bed near South Jackson Street, approximately where Bertha is currently stuck. Coincidence?"

The rest of the release is here — if you need some good entertainment.

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Joe Copeland is political editor for Crosscut. You can reach him at

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Posted Wed, Dec 18, 8:15 p.m. Inappropriate

Joe, I think the problems with the Washington Healthplan Finder
are much more extensive then being suggested. Telephone calls to the site are throttled and it has been near impossible to contact an exchange representative with questions. There appears to be ongoing software glitches that is hampering users from correctly completing applications. The state insurance commissioner's office has no oversight over the exchange, however it seems they are fielding calls of concerns from frustrated customers. Lastly, there is no means whereby the public can contact the management or executive board overseeing the exchange to make inquires or solicit help. Not really a 'healthy' situation, and one wonders if this extension will be long enough to solve the problems.


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