OLYMPIA -- The state Senate's top Republican is back at the Capitol a week after undergoing surgery to remove a tumor in his abdomen.
Sen. Mike Hewitt, R-Walla, said Monday that he thought it was important to be present in the Senate for votes on reform-related bills that Republicans have said must be part of any budget deal. Republicans hold a minority in the Senate, but gained control of the budget when three Democrats crossed over to form a coalition with them.
One of them is not in Olympia during the final two days of the special session. Sen. Rodney Tom, D-Medina, was on a college tour with his daughter in California and not expected back until Wednesday. The special session ends at midnight Tuesday.