One of the most dispiriting aspects of the shitty budget is the fact that a majority of House legislators voted to soften the blow. The most ludicrous, outdated tax exemptions remain on the books, not because we lack the majority the constitution requires to repeal them, but because of the extra requirement imposed by the voters. I hope Darryl is right that this time the legal maneuvering will work. But if anything, past courts’ rulings have been pretty consistent that they don’t want to hear any challenge to these initiatives, so nobody has standing.
So if this challenge fails, I’d like to offer a potential solution that pits Tim Eyman’s populism against itself. In the past the same legislature that claims to respect the will of the people in these instances have been quick to cut the class size initiatives. So my solution is a more broad based initiative that says the legislature needs 2/3 to cut education (or social services, or higher ed whatever polls best, or whoever is willing to spot the money).
Ideally, this would provide a class of people with standing, but as with the tax side, I’m not sure the court will think anyone has standing. Still, even if this bad, probably unconstitutional law stays on the books, it’s better than the status quo.
Right now, there is no incentive for the no tax people to compromise since cuts need 50% and tax increases need 66%. But, if budget cuts have the same hurdles to pass, then we might see a more balanced approach emerge.
And, yes, I’m aware that everybody has their own idea for an initiative, but nobody has the money. I’d prefer a court win to initiative trickery. But we can come back to the same place every few years, or we can find another way around it.