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Ousted Spokane, WA Mayor Dies at 55


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SPOKANE, Wash. - Former Mayor James E. West, recalled from office over an Internet sex scandal, died Saturday at a Seattle hospital of complications from recent cancer surgery. He was 55.


The former Republican state senate majority leader was diagnosed with colon cancer in early 2003 that later spread to his liver. A statement released by University of Washington Medical Center Saturday morning said his family and pastor were at his side.


?As a family we wish to thank the caregivers at University of Washington Medical Center, and the many friends of Jim for their support and prayers,? the family said in their statement.


West became the first Spokane city official to be recalled from office on Dec. 6, 2005, ending a 27-year career in city and state politics.


Seven months after The Spokesman-Review newspaper began publishing results of a computer ?sting? it conducted to track the mayor?s online activities in a gay chat room, West was ousted on a single charge that he used his office for personal benefit.


A former Spokane city councilman, Boy Scout leader and sheriff?s deputy, West was a conservative Republican who frequently opposed gay-rights bills during a 20-year career in the state House and Senate.



The article fails to mention that he was in fact gay, and yet was a conservative Republican who vigorously opposed any gay rights bills.


Sometimes people are impossible to understand.

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