Earlier today, we published an "Isn't It Weird That" item about a supposed coalition against Prop 1, the measure to save Metro bus service, called Families for Sustainable Transit.
The weird part—in addition to a group that's okay with a massive cut to bus service identifying itself with sustainability—was that the organizations in their coalition were hard to find.
However, we identified who's working on the group's website, which has added clarity to who's behind it. Some domain name checking led us to Sermodigital.com, a group that develops websites for Republican candidates—Rob McKenna, state Sen. Steve Litzow, (R-41, Mercer Island), Susan Fagan (R-9, Pullman), Graham Hunt (R-2, Orting), Dan Newhouse (a GOP candidate for the U.S. house in the 4th Congressional District)—as well as for the Washington State Republican Party, and Rob McKenna's former campaign director Randy Pepple.
The founders of the company are Matthew Lundh, who was the Director of New Media for the House Republicans in DC and later was the digital director for McKenna's gubernatorial campaign, and Josh Amato, the former communications director for the Washington State Republican Party.
As we reported earlier today, the supposed coalition members don't appear to be established groups. We've sent an email to Lundh to see if he can shed some light on the group.
The pro-Prop 1 campaign, Move King County Now has more than 150 actual groups—from Amazon to El Centro de la Raza to IAM 751 to the Seattle Mariners—along with King County Executive Dow Constantine, a bipartisan crop of the King County Council, and 20 regional mayors supporting them.
Prop 1—a 0.1 cent sales tax increase and a flat $60 vehicle license fee (VLF) coupled with a low-income fare and a rebate on the VLF for low-income families—would raise $130 million to preserve Metro service and fund local road projects. It's on a special April 22 ballot.