May 16, 2011
Latest example that politicians can't be trusted on taxes -- join us at Tuesday's 1:30 pm hearing on SB 5958 (extending stadium taxes)

The Legislature's decision in 1995 to override the voters' vote NOT to pay higher taxes for a sports stadium was the worst example of Olympia's arrogance, audacity, and shamelessness in our state's history. The voters said no, but just weeks later, politicians called an emergency special session of the Legislature and said it was a threat to the public health and safety if a sports stadium was not paid for by taxpayers. The bill passed. That declaration of emergency -- that emergency clause -- was challenged in court. In one of the most embarrassing rulings of the state supreme court's history, a 6-3 majority decided that the imposition of taxes for a sports stadium was a legitimate exercise of the state's emergency power.

It was beyond obscene.

But over and over and over again during legislative debate on the bill, politicians repeatedly, explicitly, and publicly promised that the stadium's taxes were temporary -- that once their miscarriage of justice was paid for, the taxes would go away. Over and over and over again, our side said that the politicians were lying, that they'd later try to extend the stadium taxes forever. But politicians responded emphatically: "No, the bill was written to ensure that all the stadium taxes would automatically expire once the stadium in paid for."

They knew they were lying, we knew they were lying, and this Tuesday, the Senate Gov Ops Committee will prove they were lying.

At their 1:30 pm hearing in the Cherberg Building in Olympia, we have the opportunity to testify against Seattle Democrat Scott White's Senate Bill 5958 appropriately called "The Latest Example That Politicians Can't Be Trusted On Taxes Act".

This despicable bill demands a vocal, contempuous repudiation. Join us and let Olympia's politicians know how you feel about their latest betrayal.

Can you believe some politicians wonder why voters don't trust them when it comes to taxes?

Can you believe some politicians wonder why voters see the need for our initiatives (like last year's I-1053 and this year's I-1125)?

Posted by Tim Eyman at May 16, 2011 05:51 PM | Email This
1. Thanks for the heads up. I'd like to come, don't know that I can, but glad to know about this. Keep on keepin' them accountable!

Posted by: Michele on May 16, 2011 09:38 PM
2. Honor and most Washington democrat politicians are most certainly not bedfellows.

Posted by: shaydo on May 17, 2011 07:24 AM
3. Would have been nice to know about this a few days ago.

Posted by: Z on May 17, 2011 11:33 AM
4. A short time ago, I suggested an amendment to the Constitution whereby the state legislatures could over-ride any act or law by the federal legislators, the executive branch or the judicial branch, as long as those state legislatures had a 75% vote for any repeal of such a federal action.

I recently discovered there is actually a group now working on getting this proposed amendment "off the ground." Their website is:

Having the states, as a group, possibly nullify an action or actions of the federal government would do a lot to bring into balance the distribution of power as intended by our Constitution. Our federal government has become oppressive over the past 150 years, and it's time to reverse the trend.

Posted by: Libertarian on May 17, 2011 02:59 PM
5. Here's how the vote went down (courtesy of Bush_Nemesis, frequent Seattle Times commenter).
Yea vote is a vote to extend the stadium taxes, which were of course promised to expire when the stadia were paid off.

Yeas: 24 Nays: 22 Absent: 0 Excused: 3

Voting Yea: Senators Brown(D), Chase(D), Conway(D), Eide(D), Fraser(D), Hargrove(D), Harper(D), Hatfield(D), Haugen(D), Hobbs(D), Keiser(D), Kilmer(D), Kline(D), Kohl-Welles(D), McAuliffe(D), Murray(D), Nelson(D), Prentice(D), Pridemore(D), Ranker(D), Regala(D), Shin(D), Tom(D), and White(D)

Voting Nay: Senators Baxter(R) , Becker(R), Carrell(R), Delvin(R), Ericksen(R), Fain(R), Hewitt(R), Hill(R), Holmquist Newbry(R), Honeyford(R), Kastama(D), King(R), Litzow(R), Morton(R), Parlette(R), Pflug(R), Rockefeller(D), Schoesler(R), Sheldon(D), Stevens(R), Swecker(R), and Zarelli (R).
Excused: Senators Baumgartner, Benton, and Roach.

Bush_nemesis advises that this shows why we need to keep electing Democrats.

Posted by: travis t on May 19, 2011 07:50 PM
6. If the three excused republicans had voted, this wouldn't be an issue. Maybe the excused members wanted to stick it to the voters of King County for supporting Democrats and taxes. Wouldn't surprise me with Roach. You reap what you sow, when voting in liberal tax and spend Democrats.

Even tax and spend Bainbridge Democrat Rockefeller understood the politics on this issue. Kastama D-Puyallup as well. Eide D-Federal Way, Hobbs D-Lake Stevens and Tom D-Bellevue will ultimately pay the price at the local going rate. This will be a non issue to the conservative or vulnerable Dems outside the region since it doesn't affect them or their district.

Posted by: Brandon R on May 20, 2011 07:09 PM
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