First lady in Washington to raise money for Patty Murray



Posted on October 25, 2010 at 8:36 AM

BELLEVUE, Wash. -  Another big-name Democrat is in Washington state to help out Democratic Sen. Patty Murray.

First Lady Michelle Obama will be at two events in Western Washington Monday to campaign for Murray.   The Murray campaign says the vice president's wife, Jill Biden, also is coming to town.

The first event is being called a "Grassroots Luncheon," and is being held at the Hyatt in downtown Bellevue. The doors for the $1000 a plate lunch open at 10am.

After that fundraiser they will travel a few miles to a mansion in Medina for a second luncheon. It is being held at the home of Jeff and Susan Brotman. Jeff Brotman is the co-founder and chairman of Costco.

Murray is in a tight race with Republican challenger Dino Rossi for a U.S. Senate seat.

The busy afternoon is not just about fund raising. It is also an effort to motivate voters, especially women ahead of next week's elections. Women make up the majority of the electorate, but recent polls show many have been unenthusiastic about the upcoming elections according to  Last week President Obama was in Seattle, and made a point to focus on how economic issues are impacting women.

Sally Charleton says having Michelle Obama here could really speak to women voters. "I think she makes women want to get more involved in politics and what's going on in the world," says Charleton.

About a block away from where the First Lady will speaking, we found voters divided about how helpful these big name visits are to candidates.

"I think all politicians do it. It is part of the fund raising and probably helps build excitement, but it doesn't do anything for me," says Kent Angier.

Justin Garvin sees the First Lady's visit as a big boost. "I really like her. I think she is a great example of what you can do with a little motivation. I think it is going to help Patty Murray a lot," says Garvin.

After the Washington visit the First Lady will stay on the campaign trail supporting other candidates in tight races, like California's Senator Barbara Boxer.