If you follow anyone in the left leaning Twitter space, you’ve undoubtedly seen a tweet from Joshua Collins. Over the last several months the 25 year old trucker has been steadily building his audience , with over 54,000 followers at the time this article was written.
Collins’ chances of victory were significantly improved when the incumbent, Denny Heck, announced two weeks ago that he will be retiring and not seeking reelection. At the present, Collins is the only Democrat that has filed to run with the FEC.
Unsurprisingly, the political establishment is not willing to cede power to an outsider intent on changing the system.
On Monday, Kristine Reeves (D), a member of the Washington State Legislature with a district overlapping Heck’s, announced she will be retiring. Reeves hasn’t yet confirmed she will be running for Congress, but given the nature of the announcement it’s almost certain she intends to enter the race.
In an email from political consulting firm WinPower Strategies, Reeves, billed herself as a progressive and touted legislation she supported to increase the pay of teachers and family leave.
“While we have accomplished much in Washington state, critical progressive priorities and investments in our future too often fall victim to special interests in Washington, D.C.,” Reeves said in announcing her resignation. “That’s got to change.
Despite Reeves’ newfound disdain for special interest groups, her list of previous donors is awash with corporate money, including contributions from oil and gas (Chevron, BP, Tesoro), big tobacco (Reynolds, Altria), Amazon, and several health insurance and pharmaceutical companies.
Reeves was nominated for the group’s “Rising Star” award. According to a press release, the nomination meant Reeves gained access to EMILYs list’s “vast fundraising network” and could “receive strategic advice from its consultants.”
All of this seems to indicate Collins, who has refused corporate PAC money, could soon be facing a super PAC backed, corporate funded, establishment campaign.
Neither Reeves or WinPower Strategies responded when asked to comment. It is unclear who is paying WinPower Strategies for their services.
**Update: **A previous version of this article incorrectly stated the WA-10 primary occurs in March. In Washington, only the presidential primary is in March. The primary for House of Representative seats is in August.