Super supporter defends us …

by | Sep 25, 2013

The three of us worked super hard with all of you this year beating back Olympia’s attempt to raise taxes.  Our most powerful lobbying tool was the voters overwhelmingly approval of I-1185 last November (I-1185 extended the 2/3’s-for-tax-increases requirement).  Since July, we’ve asked all of you to donate to our compensation fund.  As usual, opponents are attacking us because they say we don’t really do anything to earn your support.  A few years back, super supporter Mike Dunmire wrote a column defending us.  Here it is:


        I read with interest your editorial criticizing me for my willingness to donate to the compensation fund for Tim Eyman, Jack Fagan and Mike Fagan for their efforts. 

        You did not mention that Tim Eyman and Mike and Jack Fagan work without pay for months of daily effort without any compensation. Eyman and his partners do the vast majority of the grunt work and organization of the campaign. There is not a single other organization that accomplishes so much with so little resources. For a citizen concerned about issues, there isn’t a more cost effective way of getting involved than by supporting their efforts.

        The compensation fund becomes available for voluntary donations from those people who appreciate Eyman’s team efforts. No one is obligated to contribute. The compensation for months of effort boils down to splitting what other concerned citizens voluntarily contribute. No government subsidies and no allocation of taxpayer dollars, only voluntary citizen contributions.

        Besides doing signature drives, they work each year fighting against politicians’ attempts to undermine or end the initiative process.  They organize supporters to oppose state and local tax increases.  They fight in the Legislature and in the courts to defend previously approved initiatives. And they work hard every year keeping their supporters informed.  I don’t know of anyone else in politics that works as hard or who has accomplished as much as the three of them have.

        The legislature passes hundreds of laws each session. Many of these laws are based on priorities different than those of the people. The legislature has infinite resources (our tax dollars), laws are made on a quid pro basis, special interests have enormous influence and the demand for tax dollars appears endless. Eyman and his team expend months of life energy without compensation because they believe in what they are doing and then are courageous enough to base their entire enumeration on the good will and generosity of like-minded people. 

        For members of the News Tribune’s editorial board that are concerned about Eyman’s compensation, I would like to ask if you would consider earning your livelihood by performing services for months without any compensation and then, after the fact, rely exclusively on voluntary donations from the beneficiaries of your efforts. 

        Who would even entertain such a compensation structure?  Jack, Mike and Tim are people driven by a desire to make a difference.  They firmly believe in their ideas and are committed to providing the voters of Washington with choices; the opportunity to have the voters’ voices heard in the area of public policy.  I, for one, am grateful for their efforts.  Michael E. Dunmire, retired, Woodinville

        From now until the end of December, we are “passing the hat” – asking our supporters to contribute to our separate, stand-alone compensation fund “Help Us Help Taxpayers” so we can continue fighting for taxpayers.