#4ThePeople: Get to know the candidates for governor and their visions for Washington

Both born and raised Washingtonians with ties across the state. 

Their roots run deep, but Governor Jay Inslee and Republic Police Chief Loren Culp have deeply different visions for Washington. 

“There are successes here and the success is saving lives,” said Gov. Inslee. 

Under Inslee, Washington was one of the first states to have a statewide mask mandate and stay home order that had schools and businesses shut down… Some of which are slowly reopening. 

“Other states have 10 times the disease we have, we have lowered our numbers dramatically, and because we have done that we have opened up in a safe way, quite a number of business,” said Inslee. 

Oxfam has ranked Washington among the top 5 states for workers during COVID-19. The study looked at how states help working and unemployed families in this pandemic. Inslee has imposed restrictions, and modified those rules as well. 

“We just need a second segment of $15 million to these small business people. We’ve also done $100 million fund for landlord relief to keep rents down and help landlords,” said Inslee. 

An eviction moratorium has been extended through December. Inslee says he’s working on more plans to help families and schools. 

In our interview with the governor, he sympathized with families and small business owners, acknowledging hardships and heartaches. But he believes these are the right decisions for these historic times. 

“This is a tough choice but it is one we are making that I think protects our loved ones,” said Inslee. 

While Inslee has two terms or governorship under his belt, his challenger has never run for office until now. 

“I’m not going to be the boss of 7 and a half million people; I’ll run the executive branch of the state government,” said Culp. 

Loren Culp is the police chief of Republic. We tried to get a better sense of what Washington would look like under a potential Governor Culp. 

“As soon as I take the oath of office, if there’s any restrictions left on our citizens when we take office, I’m going to issue an executive order and lift those restrictions,” said Culp. 

He’s been vocal against the mask mandate. He told 4 News Now that at a rally in Liberty Lake. 

“People know how to protect themselves from covid,” said Culp. “It doesn’t need a mandate.” 

Yet medical experts have said wearing masks and social distancing works. Scientists have also made grim predictions, some of which may already be hitting us right now. As COVID cases go up across the country and in Washington, we asked Culp how he would handle a fall surge of the virus. 

“I will always recommend people do what the medical professionals suggest that we do to keep our families and businesses safe,” said Culp.”But I will never mandate something that people do.”

As governor, he did say he would consult with medical experts. 

Come November 3rd, voters have a choice between Inslee and Culp, and going down these paths. 

“I’m not about to violate citizens rights because of a war or because of a virus,” said Culp. 

“We’re kind of in a life boat, we’re rowing to the shoreline, we can see it, we’re not quite there yet but we’re rowing in the right direction together,” said Inslee.