Legal analysis of I-1366 shows we did our homework — new initiative primed if…

by | Nov 23, 2015

 For 2 1/2 years, we worked on what became I-1366 so we were obviously ecstatic when voters’ validated it on election day.  We did our homework because we knew we were walking through a political and legal minefield.  I-1366 was carefully drafted to avoid those political and legal landmines. 

       After the initiative qualified for the ballot in July, here’s the legal analysis that was done on it:

        It thoroughly and methodically goes through the many legal and political questions we were going to face in the campaign for I-1366.  Here’s a quick summary:

l)  Does the Attorney General’s ballot title comply with the subject in title requirements of Article II, Section 19 of the Washington Constitution?  Yes.  Explanation follows.

2)  Do the policies in Initiative 1366 have rational unity to satisfy the single subject requirement?  Yes.  Explanation follows.

3)  Does the initiative “force” the Legislature to put a constitutional amendment on the ballot?  No.  Explanation follows.

4)  Does the initiative implement policies that the Legislature could not do?  No.  Explanation follows.

5)  If the Legislature does not refer a 2/3 Constitutional Amendment to the ballot, is the revenue reduction from the lower sales tax unprecedented?  No.  Explanation follows.

6)  Does the initiative conflict with the McCleary decision?  No.  Explanation follows.

If Initiative 1366 is approved by the voters, we firmly believe a challenge to the initiative’s legality has no support in existing law.  None of the arguments raised that I have seen are sufficient to invalidate this initiative.

       There was a vigorous campaign on I-1366.  Our side made arguments for it and opponents made arguments against it.  The voters pamphlet presented the issues thoroughly.  And voters for the 6th time sided with us. 

       Everyone acknowledges that the Legislature has the power to put a 2/3-For-Taxes Constitutional Amendment on the 2016 ballot.  Regardless of the outcome of the litigation over I-1366, it boils down to those 58 Democrat legislators in pro-2/3 districts.  Will they join the united and unanimous House & Senate Republicans and refer?  Or will they refuse to respect the voters’ 6th approval?  

       Our new initiative is primed if they refuse.  We’re more than happy to do it again if they refuse.  And past history and current polling shows it’ll be approved by voters for the 7th time.  And then we’ll do it again 2 years later for the 8th time.  And on and on.   

       But if those 58 Democrats (or at least 7 out of 18 Senators and at least 18 out of 40 House members) do the right thing and refer, then both sides will have every opportunity to convince voters to vote ‘yay’ or ‘nay’ on a constitutional amendment in 2016. 

       If those 58 Democrats refuse, then they face our “Tougher To Raise Taxes” Initiative and a lot of this kind of stuff: 

(click on image to enlarge)

        And this: 

        Here’s the full length 25 minute video recording of us filing our new initiative last Wednesday:

        Here’s a shorter version of that same video that shows only our “Ice Cream for Inslee” press conference (includes his communications’ directors’ hysterical meltdown):          

         Always remember, this new initiative ( and the signature drive using this petition ( will not proceed and will not be necessary if those 58 Democrats respect the pro-2/3 voters in their districts by referring a clean 2/3-for-taxes constitutional amendment to the 2016 ballot EXACTLY AS VOTERS DEMANDED WHEN THEY PASSED I-1366 TWO WEEKS AGO. 

        The people clearly want permanent protection from Olympia’s insatiable tax appetite.  And we’re doing everything we can to help them get it.  It’s clear we need your help now more than ever.