James Windle Mug.jpg
James Windle, minus log.
James Windle will not be representing Washington's 8th District in Congress. Despite the Independent's best efforts, which, as you'll recall, included

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Day the Log Runs Died: Independent James Windle Finds Victories in His Primary Defeat

James Windle Mug.jpg
James Windle, minus log.
James Windle will not be representing Washington's 8th District in Congress. Despite the Independent's best efforts, which, as you'll recall, included heaving around a five-foot, 37-pound log on his back for a week-long series of promotional exercise routines (for lack of a better description), Windle so far has received just under 3,000 votes, or about 4 percent of the total votes cast in yesterday's primary.

Not surprisingly, Democrat Karen Porterfield and incumbent Republican Dave "I Caught the Green River Killer" Reichert will now face off in November's general election - Red vs. Blue, just as we've grown accustomed to.

Still, Windle the Independent says his efforts, and his log runs, were not in vain.

Seattle Weekly: What do you attribute the results to?

James Windle: The major party candidates have the advantages of organizations and existing networks. This paid off based on the latest vote count. Still, with limited resources and time we managed to pull thousands of votes. This suggests to me the gap between Independent and major party candidates is closing. Successful Independent candidacies are right around the corner, in my view.

Are you surprised?

I am disappointed, but not surprised. There is a tyranny of geography in the new 8th Congressional District. There are over 672,000 people from Chelan to Eatonville. We had a good message and were well-received, but we were limited in our ability to reach without established organizations across the District. The major parties have clear advantages in reach.

Do you have any regrets or things you would have done differently in hindsight?

This was a great experience. I did not start the campaign with an organizational foundation. The federal government job I resigned from on May 1 prohibited me from any advance planning for a partisan campaign. I would like to have had an organization in place rather than simultaneously full-time campaigning and building an organization.

What comes next?

I will take a few days in the mountains with some friends to consider what is next. I will leave my log behind. I have some writing I need to do based on my experience the past decade in Washington, D.C. and running for Congress these last three months.

How do you think the log factored into the campaign?

The log added some unexpected excitement to the campaign. As an Independent, you have to find unorthodox methods for getting your message out. My hope was the runs would get people to look a little closer at me in the voter's pamphlet. I must admit, after 36 miles in 8 days, I will probably take a few days off from log running.

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