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Originally published Thursday, January 31, 2008 at 12:00 AM

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Murray endorses Clinton

Sen. Patty Murray on Wednesday endorsed Hillary Rodham Clinton for president. The endorsement came 10 days before the state's Democratic...

Sen. Patty Murray on Wednesday endorsed Hillary Rodham Clinton for president.

The endorsement came 10 days before the state's Democratic and Republican caucuses on Feb. 9.

"To me this really was about personal loyalty and admiration," said Murray, a Washington state Democrat.

Murray and Clinton both arrived in Washington, D.C., in 1993. Murray worked closely with the then-first lady on the ill-fated attempt to reshape the country's health-care system.

Since Clinton joined the Senate in 2001, she and Murray have worked together on the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions committee, and have cooperated on port-security legislation and several health issues.

Washington state's other senator, Maria Cantwell, endorsed Clinton last month.

Clinton also has the endorsements of former Gov. Gary Locke, Rep. Jay Inslee, King County Executive Ron Sims and Snohomish County Executive Aaron Reardon.

Murray also had good things to say about Clinton's Democratic opponent, Sen. Barack Obama. She said she respects the inspiration he's brought to people on the campaign trail and that the Democratic Party needs to "heed that" no matter who is nominated.

Murray's endorsement doesn't mean she will be in the state to work for Clinton before the caucuses. As a member of Senate leadership, she said, her job is to help keep the Senate running and that Clinton understands that.

Copyright © 2008 The Seattle Times Company

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