Kristiansen re-elected caucus chairman by House Republicans

CLE ELUMRep. Dan Kristiansen, R-Snohomish, will serve a third term as chairman of the Washington House Republican Caucus. House Republicans re-elected Kristiansen to the position today during a meeting in Cle Elum.

“It’s an honor to once again be chosen to serve on the leadership team of the House Republicans. We have some major challenges ahead with the budget and the recession, but it also presents a great opportunity to reform government and implement policies that will help get people back to work in the private sector. I’m looking forward to working not only with my fellow House and Senate Republicans, but also my colleagues on the other side of the aisle to solve the problems our state is facing, including getting this economy turned around,” said Kristiansen.

In addition to leading caucus meetings, Kristiansen’s duties include working with Republican leaders on the House policy and budget committees to develop and manage Republican legislative policies, and help communicate proposed leadership actions to members of the caucus.

When the 2011 legislative session begins Jan. 10, lawmakers will be facing a budget deficit of $5.7 billion.

“There is no more bail-out money coming from the feds. There are no more funds to raid. We can’t kick the can down the road any longer. We’ve got to get down to budget and policy issues that have not been properly dealt with in the last several years,” added Kristiansen. “Ultimately, the long-term solution to the state’s budget problems is predicated on getting people back to work. The revenue comes when people are working. Whether it be in regulatory or tax policy, we need to wrap our arms around the challenges of helping employers, especially small businesses, get back in the position of hiring again and retaining existing employees.”

The 39th District lawmaker said with the recent addition of six Republican seats, House Republicans will be in a stronger position to effect policy changes in the coming biennium, even though Democrats remain in majority control.

“House Republicans are ready to move forward with substantive changes sought by the electorate, including smaller, more efficient and effective government, lesser taxes, reducing regulatory burdens, and private-sector job creation. We hope that our Democrat colleagues will be willing to work with us in implementing solutions to the challenges we face. I’m looking forward to those opportunities,” said Kristiansen.

Also during the caucus meeting, Rep. Richard DeBolt, Chehalis, was re-elected leader of the state House Republicans, a position he has held since 2006. Others named to the Republican leadership team include: Rep. Joel Kretz, Wauconda, as deputy leader;  Rep. Charles Ross, Naches, as floor leader; Rep. Bill Hinkle, Cle Elum, as whip; and Rep. Kevin Parker, Spokane, and Rep. Matt Shea, Spokane Valley, as assistant floor leaders.

Kristiansen was first elected as House Republican Caucus chairman in 2006. In January, he begins his fifth term representing the 39th District.


Washington State House Republican Communications