Another mystery challenger to Sen. Pam Roach

Staff writerMay 16, 2014 

State Sen. Pam Roach, R-Auburn, speaks on the Senate floor Tuesday, Feb. 26, 2013. (Melissa Santos/Staff writer)

MELISSA SANTOS — Staff writer

For the second time this week, a mystery challenger is complicating the race between Republican foes Sen. Pam Roach and Rep. Cathy Dahlquist.

Earlier, it was Lane Walthers of Enumclaw filing for office as a Democrat, and Roach calling to say Walthers was planted in the race.

On the last day of candidate filing Friday, it was Lynda Messner of Bonney Lake entering the race as a Democrat, and Dahlquist airing her own worries about dirty tricks.

Messner's phone number and address match those of Lynda Dabson, who said when she ran for a local Bonney Lake position in 2009 that she was a longtime city resident who had worked in construction and accounting.

Dahlquist, R-Enumclaw, says a GOP voter database indicates Messner is a staunch Republican, contrary to her affiliation on the ballot.

And one of the leaders of the 31st District Democrats, Brian Gunn, said he didn't recognize Messner's name.

Messner couldn't immediately be reached at the telephone number and e-mail address she provided in filing for office.

Roach didn't immediately return a phone call, either. She denied earlier in the week that she was trying to find a Democrat to run, as Hurst charged.

As the dynamic of the race changes, it's not obvious which of the two frontrunners stands to benefit. Having two Democrats in the race could split their party's vote and send both Republicans to the November ballot. That's what happened in Roach's race in 2010.

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