Running for office isn't Novoselic's idea of nirvana

Grunge-rock pioneer Krist Novoselic has decided against running for lieutenant governor, saying he wants to stay involved in progressive politics but "the whole thing about running a campaign and being a public servant isn't the way to do it."

Instead, one of the founding members of Nirvana will concentrate on his work with Music for America, a group working to boost voter participation among young people.

He also will keep up his efforts for election reform.

Novoselic was the bass player in Nirvana, which broke up with the 1994 suicide of co-founder Kurt Cobain. Novoselic had several subsequent musical projects but has since retired from performing.

He lives on the Washington coast, does a program on a local public-radio station and has become a Democratic activist. He was a supporter of Howard Dean for president but will be a delegate for John Kerry at the Wahkiakum County Democratic Party convention.

He had been considering running against Lt. Gov. Brad Owen, a fellow Democrat.

"I found out firsthand that it's really considered bad form to run against an incumbent of your own party," Novoselic said yesterday.

He said he decided against a run in part for personal reasons and wanting to keep up his small-town life.

But he said he thinks it's too bad that there are not more intraparty contests in politics.

"I think every incumbent should be challenged," he said. "Competition serves democracy. Look at what it did to our presidential caucuses."

David Postman: 360-943-9882 or