Watch: WA lieutenant governor debate between Denny Heck and Marko Liias

The state’s second-in-command seat is open. Watch the full debate from Oct. 22 here. 

Candidates for lieutenant governor Sen. Marko Liias and Congressman Denny Heck debated Thursday, Oct. 22.

Washington will see a new lieutenant governor in November, with two Democrats in the running to fill the position. They engaged in a televised and streamed debate on Thursday, Oct. 22. Watch the video above to see the full debate. 

State Sen. Marko Liias and U.S. Rep. Denny Heck won the top two spots in the August primary in a field of 11 candidates. Heck received 25% of the vote, while Liias garnered 18.5%.

LEARN MORE: What you should know about this year's lieutenant governor's race (and the candidates)

Current Lt. Gov. Cyrus Habib announced in March that he would not seek reelection, deciding instead to start the process of becoming a Jesuit priest. 

The lieutenant governor has a few specific roles in Washington state:

Second in a line of succession: The lieutenant governor assumes the role of the governor while the governor is called to other assignments, is out of town or is incapacitated.

President of the Senate: The lieutenant governor leads discussions on legislation being debated by the Senate and works with the body’s attorneys to settle any disputes or questions over the legality of motions made by lawmakers. 

Legislative priorities: As president of the Senate, the lieutenant governor chairs a powerful committee that decides which legislation will advance to the Senate floor for debate. The position also requires service on several other committees and boards. 

The debate was organized by the Washington State Debate Coalition

Many Washingtonians have already gotten their ballots in the mail. Here's more reporting to help you decide where you land on various ballot items: 

Please support independent local news for all.

We rely on donations from readers like you to sustain Crosscut's in-depth reporting on issues critical to the PNW.


About the Authors & Contributors