1) The Freedom Foundation, a libertarian group, just released its guide to Washington State's statewide initiatives. Although the group doesn't make endorsements, it does describe the "impacts" of the initiatives along libertarian lines---describing I-1163, which would mandate training for long-term care workers, as an "unfunded mandate" that "punts the scramble for funding [health care workers] to a legislature that already faces a massive revenue shortfall in the 2011-2013 budget," and touting revenues "as high as $480 million" over six years if voters pass I-1183, the liquor-privatization proposal.
2) Earlier this week, we couldn't find any newspaper endorsements for Initiative 1125, Tim Eyman's proposal to restrict tolling and prohibit light rail on I-90. Today, the Centralia Chronicle weighed in in favor of the measure, saying that decisions about how tolls should be spent should be made by elected legislators, not the appointed state transportation commission. Also today, the Washington Retail Association said it supports the measure.
3) Former state representative Laura Ruderman, who's running for the US House seat being vacated by Democratic gubernatorial candidate Jay Inslee (D-WA, 1), showed up at Occupy Seattle last Saturday---as far as we know, the first congressional candidate to do so, though one of her competitors, state Rep. Marko Liias, has been giving them shout outs on Facebook.[pullquote]Far from finding a crowd of "'dirty hippies,'" Ruderman wrote in an email to supporters, "I saw current and former members of the Washington State Senate, former colleagues from Sound Mental Health, and stalwart members of the 45th Legislative District Democrats."[/pullquote]
Far from finding a crowd of "'dirty hippies,'" she wrote in an email to supporters, "I saw current and former members of the Washington State Senate, former colleagues from Sound Mental Health, and stalwart members of the 45th Legislative District Democrats." And while "there were some rambling speeches that didn't make a lot of sense," most of the speakers Ruderman saw showed "the incredible depth of passion and talent in everyday people."
4) King County Council challenger Richard Mitchell, a Democrat running against Republican incumbent Jane Hague, won endorsements today from a crew of current and former politicians and candidates that include one Republican. The pro-Mitchell pack includes Democratic Gov. Chris Gregoire (Mitchell was legal counsel in Gregoire's office), former US attorney under George W. Bush John McCay, and former congressional candidates Darcy Burner and Suzan DelBene.
He also got the sole endorsement of the King County Labor Council.
5) The Seattle Times calls the school board race between challenger Michelle Beutow and incumbent Harium Martin-Morris "the most unusual race" for school board, largely because Beutow has stayed away from some of the more "extreme positions" held by her fellow challengers, who have argued that the schools have been taken over by a corporate, "education reform" agenda, and because she's stayed away from negative attacks.