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The Seattle Times' Politics Northwest:

Times reporter Jim Brunner has a post about Attorney General and GOP gubernatorial candidate Rob McKenna's criticism of, well, Jim Brunner (or the "Seattle media" as McKenna put it). McKenna told a Yakima audience yesterday that the Seattle media had misinterpreted McKenna's position on Obamacare.

The key question that Brunner's post doesn't answer—nor, more importantly, McKenna doesn't answer—is this: What did the "Seattle media" get wrong?

Here's the deal: Immediately after the Supreme Court ruling, McKenna said that he—unlike the temper tantrum-prone House GOP—did not support a repeal and that the individual mandate (the part McKenna had made clear he was dead set against) should be kept in place "for now."[pullquote]If there's no contradiction, what exactly did the "Seattle media" get wrong?[/pullquote]

At a Yakima Chamber of Commerce yesterday (after an audience member accused him of backing off the GOP's party line anti-Obamacare position), McKenna said his position hadn't changed.

(His position for the past year, as a plaintiff in the lawsuit, has been that Obamacare should be repealed. His personal position, he said, was that he was only against the mandate, which he believed was unconstitutional. He supported some of the other provisions in the law, such as the exchanges.)

As McKenna's campaign spokesman Charles McCray told PubliCola this afternoon: "Rob's position has not changed.  He is not advocating for full repeal."

True. But McKenna also told the Yakima audience that the "Seattle media" had misinterpreted his position. If there's no contradiction between what McKenna said in Yakima and Seattle, then what exactly does McKenna think the "Seattle media" got wrong?


The full council decided to hold off on a proposal to raise taxi rates by about 20 cents per mile.

The increase, the PI reports, would raise the cost of a taxi ride from the airport to downtown to $40 (Currently, it's $32.)

Although the increases were proposed as a way to help taxi drivers to cover extra costs imposed by the state (including a new requirement that drivers have to pay for workers' comp insurance), drivers have complained that they won't be able to compete with for-hire private cars that charge a flat rate.

New York Times: 

In a move that would surely horrify Seattle density opponents who warn that urbanists want to "force everyone to live in a shoebox," NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg has proposed lifting minimum housing size requirements to allow micro-mini-apartments with 275 to 300 square feet of living space, a kitchen and a bathroom, but no closet.

The NYT reports on the proposal, which also includes a city-sponsored design competition.

Seattle Transit Blog:

OK, it's not the most earth-shattering news, but earlier this month, King County Metro quietly lifted a rule requiring drivers to let riders out only by the front door after 7 pm, for "safety reasons." According to STB, the result has been---well, basically, chaos. The problem, STB says, is that Metro didn't exactly change the rule; instead, they gave bus drivers discretion to open the back door when they want to.

STB editorializes: "If the official policy is wish-washy enough to be determined at an operator’s whim, I think it sets annoyingly bad precedent for operations policy in general.  If customers are taught and permitted to use the rear door after 7pm and then told otherwise when trying to do so, it not only undermines Metro’s relations with the public, but it also makes the bus-riding experience unreliable and unpredictable.
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