Lawyer for 1366 opponents: “We just don’t know why voters enacted this initiative.”

by | Jan 20, 2016

KIRO’s news story perfectly summarized yesterday’s court hearing on 1366:  “It all hinges on whether voters knew what they were doing.”  

        Lawyer for 1366 opponents:  “We just don’t know why voters enacted this initiative.”

        Lawyer from the AG’s office:  “Plaintiffs don’t give voters enough credit.  1366 was not overly long.  It was not complicated.”  

        Insultingly, 1366 opponents focused on their standard voters-are-stupid argument.  Our side focused on the initiative’s text and information in the voters pamphlet.  We pointed out that voters had months to learn about and decide how to vote on this straightforward initiative.  And we added that there is simply no evidence that voters didn’t know what they were doing when they passed I-1366.  

        The judge said he’d issue his decision on Thursday morning.

        What’s my prediction?  These things are always a Rorschach Test — you see what you wanna see.  After the hearing, opponents said they thought this King County judge will strike down 1366.  

         I said:  “I came in really confident based on all the legal briefs and I’m walking out even more confident now.  I think the judge ‘gets it’ as far as what the initiative’s all about.  I think he gets the fact that you can easily interpret this initiative as a totally valid exercise of the people’s rights.”    

         Truth is nobody knows.  And whichever side loses will immediately file an expedited appeal to the state supreme court.  

         But it’s always important to remember that we won the only important fight:  the voters passed Initiative 1366.  That was and is the whole enchilada.  Now that we have the backing of the citizenry, we must continue to press our case.

         Ballot box victories have a short shelf-life.

         The only way to convince the Legislature to listen to the people is to be relentlessly persistent.  

          How do we show them that?  Now that the voters have passed our 6th initiative; we’re moving full steam ahead with our 7th.  It’s called “Tougher to Raise Taxes” and it puts a one-year time limit on any tax increase and requires any fee increase to be approved by a majority vote in both the House and Senate.  In other words, it prohibits auto-pilot, forever tax increases and prohibits state agencies from unilaterally imposing higher fees.

          Where is the best place to tell the Legislature about our new initiative?  At tomorrow’s legislative hearing.

           Join us tomorrow (Thurs), 10am-noon, for legislative hearing on Senate Joint Resolution 8211 (1366’s constitutional amendment).  Senate Gov Ops, Hearing Room 1 in the Cherberg Bldg in Olympia.  Come one, come all.

     Monday’s Tacoma News Tribune shows why all our taxpayer protection efforts are necessary:  “In an election year, passing what would probably be the largest tax increase in state history is probably not a viable strategy for either party.”

      So we’re being set up for the largest tax increase in state history.  We must work really hard this year to protect ourselves now and in the future.  Olympia has an insatiable tax appetite and our efforts are the only thing taxpayers can count on. 

       We need your financial support to continue to win these battles on behalf of taxpayers.  Please make a donation today.  With your help and support, we will succeed.