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Gregoire won't rule out leaving office for D.C. job
Posted by Andrew Garber
It was clear Tuesday that Gov. Chris Gregoire has left the door open, with a stopper in it, to any offer by the White House for her to become solicitor general if Elena Kagan is confirmed to be a justice on the U.S. Supreme Court.
The White House confirmed earlier in the month that Gregoire was being considered for the job. The governor said she's gotten no calls from the president's office and is not "looking for a job."
But she also said: "It's one thing to say I can't leave the state right now, I'm not looking for a job. It's another thing ... if the president of the United States looks at you and says 'the country needs you to serve, I'm asking.' I don't know what I'd do."
Gregoire made the comments during one of her periodic news conferences with the Olympia press corps.
In other news, the governor said the state is moving ahead with a furlough bill approved by the Legislature earlier this year. The measure requires certain state workers to be furloughed up to 10 days between now and the end of June 2011 to save money.
The measure allowed for agencies to find other ways to save the money, but Gregoire said it appears furloughs are what will happen.
However, the vast majority of the state workforce is exempt from the measure. And the furloughs will not be uniform.
For example, state liquor stores are exempt, but some licensing offices are not. In addition, some agencies only need to furlough workers a few days to save the money called for in the state budget. Others will need all 10 days.
Gregoire said her office is still sorting out who will be furloughed and when.
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