Latest gubernatorial candidate is a former Yakima politician - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Latest gubernatorial candidate is a former Yakima politician

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There's still about a year and a half until Washington residents elect a new governor, but candidates are already on the campaign trail. 

Today U.S. Congressman Jay Inslee stopped in Wapato to speak to supporters. Inslee's district is in Western Washington, but he has ties to Yakima County. His first job out of law school was in Selah, and that's also where he held his first elected office.

Having lived and worked all over Washington was a big theme in his speech today at the Sunnyside Dam.

He also said his number one focus will be adding jobs. A big part of his plan is expanding the international reach of Washington agribusiness, specifically selling apples in China.

However, one thing that was notably absent from his speech were this issues of crime and gangs in Yakima County.

"[We need] Strong law enforcement and prevention to keep these kids off the street. Some of that work is done in the schools, some of it is done in the community centers, and some of it is done in the police station," Inslee told reporters when asked about gang crime.

Inslee's opponent, Attorney General Rob McKenna, supported failed anti-gang legislation last year.

Although Central and Eastern Washington are typically considered red territory, Inslee said he plans to spend a lot of time campaigning in our area.