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Saturday, April 03, 2004

The Stranger Monorail Section

A whole section for us monorail lovers. Dan Savage had the best bit, but the whole section is worthwhile.

Furious monorail supporters rallied, and smart, quotable monorail supporter Peter Sherwin filed a new initiative, I-53. Again, establishment pols and papers opposed the plan. But voters said yes--by an even wider margin than the first time. A revived and fully funded ETC was given two years to come up with a new, more detailed plan, one that was put before the voters in 2002. When it came time for the third and final vote, all the usual suspects lined up against it. But for the third time in five years, Seattle voters said yes. And with their third vote, Seattle voters said yes to building a rapid transit system--not yes to talking about building a rapid transit system, not yes to drafting some more plans, not yes-but-only-if-no-one-objects. Voters said yes, build us a rapid transit system. Seattle needs one.

...

The usual monorail opponents inside city hall (hello, Richard Conlin) and outside city hall (hello, Seattle Times) are gearing up to make their last-ditch attempts to stop the monorail. The anti-monorail/anti-progress crowd is hoping to force delays that will drive up the cost of building the proposed system and, they hope, ultimately derail the project. And where are Seattle's monorail supporters? After racking up three victories at the ballot box in five years, supporters (including this paper) have been content to sit back and let the monorail agency do its work. But now it's time for monorail supporters to remind opponents why Seattle said yes to the monorail three times.



$3,100 a week

Just to promote an initiative. It's nice work if you can give it to yourself.

Initiative promoter Tim Eyman, who recently took more than $46,000 in campaign contributions from a compensation fund he set up last year, announced yesterday he would take another $3,100 a week over the next three months while he gathers signatures for a new gambling-and-tax-cut initiative.



Friday, April 02, 2004

Union Negotiations

State employee union leaders rallied at the Capitol on Thursday to complain about what they called "stonewalling" by Gov. Gary Locke's chief negotiator in the historic collective bargaining talks getting under way.

Some green-shirted employees wore paper bags on their heads marked with big black X's or dollar signs as speaker Gary Hill complained that state employees are "nameless and faceless to the governor."



New Monorail Alignments and Stations

here



I Hope Nobody's Surprised

That Locke used his line item veto to give us a Montana primary. I've been thinking about the legislators who voted for this. At first I thought they were suckers. But the more it rattles around my brain the more I think they must have known he would have done this. Although I have no proof, but at least some of the people who voted for the final bill must have cast their vote that way to avoid the consequences of voting for Cajun. And while I applaud the outcome, I can't say I approve of their methods.



ACLU Sues Washington to let Gays Marry

ACLU site (the text of the lawsuit and a press release are there so far, but there will probably be more as this moves forward). The couples are from all over. I was under the impression that they were all from King County, but King, Kitsap, Pierce, Spokane, Thurston, and other counties represented there. Here the Seattle Times gives a fine account.

As the suit was announced, at news conferences in Seattle and Spokane, Attorney General Christine Gregoire was putting legislative leaders on notice.

She said that while her office will defend the law, which allows marriage only between a man and a woman and prohibits the recognition of same-sex marriages performed elsewhere, arguments before the courts will not be based on religion or morality. She said "we will not object" to the Legislature hiring its own legal counsel to make other arguments.

"Throughout my 25-year history with the Office of the Attorney General, it has stood for the protection of equal rights for all of our citizens and has fought discrimination in all forms," Gregoire, a Democratic candidate for governor, said in a written statement. "Our office will present those arguments to the Court which are consistent with our Constitution's protection of equal rights and non-discrimination."

Also just a note, nobody running for AG has told us here at the Washington State Political Report what they would do if they were to inherit the lawsuit.

edited Grammar, and crazy wording



Wednesday, March 31, 2004

My Co-Conspirator (maybe)

As you know, I've been posting slowly as of late. And it will continue for a couple of months. Regular poster, and all around great gal (I'm sure, we've never met) Brenda Helverson may be picking up some of the slack. I've given her an open invitation, and she's still not sure if she wants to post or not. So if for some reason there's an intelligently written thing, or something that isn't insane, or a post doesn't take a dozen tangents, or just an appropriate use of the word "or", check below the post, and it'll probably be her.



Mad Cow

Here's what Locke signed and what he vetoed. Does his explanation for vetoing the interagency work group right with any of you (as if any of you have stayed around)? We're already doing something like this, so lets not have the full force of law behind it.



Sunday, March 28, 2004

Is there Anything Sweeter

Than seeing someone who isn't you get pulled over for speeding? Yes there is. It's watching someone who isn't you get pulled over for driving alone in the HOV lane. Oh my. There's nothing like it. I don't know if 764-HERO is still in effect, but seeing it happen in real time is just the most amazing thing.

It's not the best reason to oppose HOT lanes. The best reason has to do with encouraging carpooling, and the number of commute trips. A second good reason is to keep a lane relatively clear for the bus. But really the sweetest thing is being passed by a guy alone in his car whizzing past us law abiders, and then seeing him get pulled over a minute later. Oh.

Maybe this is just my good fortune, since I don't have a moving violation or a parking violation. Do you folks with moving violations feel the same way? Do you feel bad for them? Or are you glad the cops found someone who wasn't you to pick on?



Gay Marriage Poll

A slim majority of state residents oppose gay marriage (50% to 44 against). But a majority don't want to change the Constitution, and do want every other right for gays.



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