As the economic downturn has taken its toll, millions of families in Washington state and across the country have found themselves struggling with foreclosure, layoffs, and the loss of their savings.  My top priority is to help get the economy going again by enabling businesses to expand, creating good, family-wage jobs, and helping our communities stay competitive in the global economy. 

I believe that in order to see lasting recovery, we must invest in emerging and growing industries.  But if we want those efforts to reach their full potential, we need educated workers to fill the jobs and sound infrastructure capable of moving goods and people from place to place.  Keeping up our investments in education, roads, bridges, mass transit, and other infrastructure is critical to our economic success over the long-term.


  • Ensuring the American workforce has the skills and training necessary to remain a world economic leader.
  • Strengthening our housing market to restore stability and expand homeownership.
  • Ensuring financial markets are properly regulated to prevent market manipulation and encourage stability and investment.
  • Expanding our alternative energy and technology industries.
  • Making higher education affordable and accessible to ensure a skilled workforce.
  • Ensuring federal dollars are well-managed, well-spent, and being used to promote economic growth.


  • Worked as chair of the Senate Transportation, Housing, and Urban Development Appropriations Subcommittee to ensure funding for infrastructure improvements and economic development initiatives.
  • Introduced the Summer Jobs Stimulus Act to support summer youth employment opportunities directly linked to academic and occupational learning.
  • Consistently supported efforts to make the state sales tax deduction permanent.
  • Introduced legislation to promote financial literacy for youth and adults.
  • Pushed for reauthorization of the Higher Education Act to provide financial assistance for students in postsecondary and higher education.
  • Fought for increased federal funding to support stronger math, science, and technology curriculums in our schools.
  • Supported the Economic Stimulus Act of 2008 to help jump-start the economy.

See more information about my work on business and economic issues important in Washington state:  Trade, Labor, Small Business, Taxes