A Pilgrimage of Success
by Steven Nelson
Monday, January 12th I and two other Precinct Committee Officers (PCO)s drove up to Olympia for the first day of the legislative session. This trip was of special significance for PCOs Vicki Kraft, Garry Lee and myself. We had all worked on the successful campaign to elect Lynda Wilson State Representative to the 17th Legislative District.
Our trip started at 7:00 AM so we could meet with Representative Wilson in her new office in Olympia bright and early at 9:00 AM.
While the weather in Olympia was cool and damp, our reception at Representative Wilson’s office was warm and welcoming.
Situated on the 4th floor of the John L. O’Brien Building, Wilson’s office and that of her neighbor’s were already buzzing with staffers whisking about and the constant sound of ringing phones. We sat and visited with Wilson for some time then we were told that they had scheduled time for us to go to the house floor for a photo op.
It was exciting to be led into the house chambers to see where all the action happens. Capitol floor staffers were extremely cordial and professional as they led us in and up to the podium at the front of the chambers. After some quick photos with Wilson and her family we were led to Wilson’s seat in the chambers. Representative Wilson looked right at home as she took her seat and more photos ensued.
Noticing that Representative Liz Pike, 18th LD seat was just an arm’s length away, we wrote her a note wishing her well and placed it under one of items on her desk. With the photo op complete it was time to head up the gallery to stake our claim to some seats with a good vantage point. After some time was spent visiting with Lynda’s family and families of other members, Representative Paul Harris, 17th LD (Lynda’s seatmate) invited Lynda’s friends and family down to the Republican Caucus chambers. Harris gave the honor to new members to introduce their family and friends to the entire caucus. For me personally, it was one of the high points of the trip to be able to meet so many of our Republican Representatives that have and will continue to fight for our principles and values.
Then it was back to the gallery for the swearing in ceremony. Members walked in two by two and stood at their seats as the color guard presented the flag. After the invocation Rep. Paul Harris did a fantastic job of singing the National Anthem. Next came the moment we were there for. Members stood, raised their right hands and made their oaths. It was mind blowing to think about the cumulative effort to get each member there in that place at that moment. To see our friend Lynda Wilson there next to Rep. Pike, Rep. Orcutt, Rep. Vick and Rep. Harris was overwhelming.
After the ceremonies were complete Representatives Wilson and Pike took the entire contingent from Clark County out for a post oath lunch. It was at that time I received a text from friend Garrett Delano (Rep. Liz Pike’s legislative assistant). “Don’t forget to stop
by for a visit.” This marked yet another high point because just months before Garrett had been critically injured in a traffic accident and his future was uncertain at the time. So we drove back to the Capitol campus and spent some time with Mr. Delano. Garrett was such a gracious host. He gave us a tour of Rep. Pike’s office then walked us through the legislative process. It was so good to see him back in action!
With spirits high the three PCOs headed home with great feelings of accomplishment and renewed vigor for future success in Clark County.