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June 11, 2012 at 6:10 AM

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Monday wrap: Democrats for McKenna; gay marriage referendum chat today; gov debate Tuesday

Happy Monday. All.

The political season of 2012 heats up noticeably this week.

Republican gubernatorial candidate Rob McKenna will stand at the base of the Space Needle this morning and announce a group of Democratic supporters.

The names of Democrats supporting McKenna will be shared at the news conference at 10 a.m.

The Seattle Times Politics Northwest Blog hosts a live chat Monday at noon on the gay marriage law and the referendum challenging it.

Should the new law stand or be rejected? We encourage readers to take a few moments to join us on the blog to discuss Referendum 74, which is all but certainly headed to the November ballot.

Our discussion features Anne Levinson, who favors the state's new gay marriage law, and Joseph Backholm, who is fighting the law passed by the Legislature. Feel free to send thoughtful questions in advance to or

The state's first gubernatorial debate will be Tuesday at 3:30 p.m. in Spokane, sponsored by the Association of Washington Business. The big discussion will air live on TVW and KUOW-FM. This is the only "debate" debate --- not to be confused with forums or Q and A sessions --- scheduled so far between the two candidates.

One of the hottest U.S. Senate races in the Northwest this year is happening in Montana. U.S. Rep. Denny Rehberg won the Republican Senate Primary and will face incumbent Democrat John Tester.

RealClearPolitics shows the latest polling on the race. It is going to be expensive -- and noisy. Tester has a huge challenge on his hands.

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Campaign contributions to state races

This table shows campaign contributions to each gubernatorial candidate. Click here for more info on other races.


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