Republicans keep the faith as Rossi keeps dodging questions

I sometimes envy Republicans, for it must be comfortable living in a world of simple truths where the free market always makes the most efficient use of resources, God really does bless America above all other nations, and Dino Rossi truly is a master at writing state budgets. But unfortunately reality always seems to get in the way of my aspirations towards faith-based politics, condemning me to a life of tawdry cynicism.

For example, ex-real estate salesman and 2008 gubernatorial hopeful Dino Rossi spoke before the Tacoma-Pierce County Chamber of Commerce yesterday, comparing Democrats in Olympia to drunken sailors.

“I realized that it’s really an insult to these drunken sailors to compare them to Olympia,” Rossi said. “These guys are spending their own money.”

Ha, ha, ha. That’s original.

So if state spending really is out of control, as Rossi implies, what solution does he offer other than tossing insults? What exactly does Rossi suggest we cut from the state budget?

Um… nothing.

Rossi said in an interview that before he handled the budget in 2003, he thought the what-would-you-cut question was a good one. “Now that I’ve actually written the budget I realize that’s not a question that can really be answered,” he said.

Yup, that’s the kind of bold leadership we can expect from Dino Rossi… strong talk about cutting budgets yet no answers on what exactly should be cut. In his entire speech before the chamber he did not offer a single suggestion of a program he would axe or scale back. In fact, he said, “that’s not a question that can really be answered.”

And… he’s running for governor why?

(Oh, and just for the sake of accuracy, it should be pointed out once again that he never really did “write a budget” in the first place, for as he admitted in introducing the state Senate’s 2003 budget proposal, he was merely “following the Governor’s lead.“)

All this time I’ve been berating Rossi for refusing to counter straight questions with straight answers, when the truth is he simply doesn’t have any. I suppose that’s why so many Republicans continue to keep the faith with Rossi — they sure got nothing else to go on.


  1. 1

    RLL spews:

    Roger, as someone who works in Olympia, I can vouch for your analysis. If Gregoire had campaigned as well as she is governing, she would have won be a landslide and Rossi would now be another footnote. Her campaign was pathetic. But she is teh best Governor I’ve seen in my 20 years in Olympia- smart, engaged, visibile and courageous.

    As for Living in the 8th @ 33: That fiction you are speading will make the flowers grow but has little additional value. And you won’t be a happy camper in 08 as Rossi is put out of his misery and the rest of the country rebukes 8 years of imperial corruption.

  2. 2

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    12 (continued)

    Yeah, Jack, we liberals know you tory traitors want to reverse 225 years of history and bring back the monarchy. Here, have some more tea.

  3. 4

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    “All this time I’ve been berating Rossi for refusing to counter straight questions with straight answers, when the truth is he simply doesn’t have any.”

    The truth is out — Dino Rossi is the GOP’s AFFIRMATIVE ACTION candidate! :D

  4. 5

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    “it must be comfortable living in a world of simple truths where the free market always makes the most efficient use of resources”

    If the free market is so great, how come Republicans continually try to rig markets?

  5. 6

    Green Thumb spews:

    Roger @ 28:

    I’m not antagonistic toward Gregoire. As a state employee I’ve seen her in action; she’s smart, engaged and is not a potted plant like Locke.

    Gregoire has been making major efforts to reform the ways state agencies operate, and often her efforts are desperately needed, e.g., encouraging more inter-agency collaboration so that the little guy can doesn’t have to talk with a half-dozen agencies to get permits to rebuild the dock on his lake-front property.

    That said, she has also generated antipathy within state government for some unfortunate missteps, such as a “GMAP” performance measurement process that often hasn’t been worth the considerable time and effort demanded by the Office of Financial Management.

    In terms of the substance of her actions, she isn’t all that much different than Locke. However, politically she hasn’t played nearly as well, even among state employees who you’d think would be reliably Democratic. I see the beginnings of a backlash here. It has many factors, including gender bias against female leaders, the onset of collective bargaining, and an increasingly inbred quality of upper-level management used to being recycled by a succession of Democratic governors.

    If Gregoire loses 2008, it may have less to do with her than that the political pendulum inevitably swings back in the other direction. The Democrats have been in charge for such a long time that they’ve gotten a little complacent. That’s the ultimate reason why Rossi did so well. Have the Democrats learned their lesson? Hard to say. But I wouldn’t close the door to the possibility of a Republican win in 2008.

  6. 7

    Roger Rabbit spews:


    You forgot to mention the Libertarian candidate siphoned off tens of thousands of gay votes from Gregoire, and she lost thousands of black votes by fumbling her relations with the black community. Gregoire had very strong credentials — she is probably the most qualified person ever to occupy the governor’s office — but her competence in governing is not matched by her campaign skills, which need improvement.

  7. 8

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    16 et al.

    We know from experience what Rossi would cut. When he had the chance to cut the state budget, he cut health care for 42,000 poor kids. He also tried to slap a $200 monthly bed tax on nursing home patients. And you can bet gutting our state’s environmental laws will be one of his top priorities.

  8. 9

    rhp6033 spews:

    Rossi is a lightweight who was set up by the Republicans as a sacrificial lamb in the slaughter everyone predicted would be the 2004 election. I know the Times generally favors Republicans, but I think even they would have been inclined to be more critical of Rossi if they thought he had a real chance to win.

    But Gregoire wasn’t really very warm and fuzzy to voters, and problems in the State Attorney General’s office didn’t help, and there were record Republican turnouts in support of Bush, upon who’s coattails Rossi rode. So Rossi almost slipped by and won this one.

    But there are real problems with him running again as a Republican candidate. In the first place, after the election the Republicans didn’t really care that he won, they just wanted to accuse the Democrats of stealing the election. Why? Because (a) it tended to muddy the waters regarding their own election theft in Florida in 2000 and Ohio in 2004, (b) it was a “wedge issue” which galvanized the Conservative Republican core which was prepared to believe any lie told against the Democrats, and (c) it was good for fund-raising nation-wide.

    Actually, the Repulicans were better off with Rossi not winning. Here they could set him up as a martyr, the poster-boy of Democratic abuse, and a rallying cry for many future elections. If he won, they would only have an incompetent governor, and have the same problems they now have with Bush (an incompetent President). For them, the image was definately better than the reality.

    So when the hand-picked judge in the hand-picked county ruled against the Republican challenge to the 2004 governor’s election, they were prepared to appeal. After all, the longer they drug it out, the more milage they could get. They were releasing a “talking point” a day to the news media (disguised as a “new revelation”), and were getting lots of free publicity. If they lost, they could always blame the Washington State Supreme Court, and use it to try to remove some of those judges in the next election, anyway.

    But Rossi decided to break ranks with the Republican operatives. You see, he had begun to believe their own propoganda, and figured that if he lost by a handfull of votes in a disputed election, then in a “perfect” election in 2008 he actually had a good chance of winning. But although the continued election challenge benefited Republicans generally, even a fool could see that the Washington voters were tired of the challenge process, and if it continued they would direct their ire towards him, personally.

    So Rossi decides to tell the party to shove it and he drops the challenge. He chooses his own potential future political career over what the party regulars feel is best for the party. He doesn’t understand – he was chosen as a sacrificial lamb in the first place, won’t he please have the decency to lie down and be slaughtered?

    So Rossi takes some time out, writes a quick book and makes the book-signing circuit (getting names, addresses, and e-mails of supporters at the same time), and prepares for the 2008 governor’s race. He assumes that he is the presumptive nominee.

    But what about the Republican party back-roomers, who are pretty pissed that he didn’t play the role they had set out for him? What good is it to get a dolt elected, if he isn’t reliable enough to do as he is told?

  9. 10

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    I think the best argument against a 2008 Rossi run is, even the GOPers aren’t stupid enough to run on a “we wuz robbed in 2004!” platform. Um … or are they?

  10. 11

    skagit spews:

    Rossi will never admit where he’d cut the budget because even the right would get sick. Children are getting poorer every year and that’s where he would cut. Can’t admit that . . . but he’d do it once in. I’ve no doubt about that. He’s a salesman/

  11. 12

    Puddybud Michael Kennedy spews:

    Goldy: Where is the most recent open thread? With such bad news yesterday from the Supreme Court over the Delay redistricting plan, I understand you not posting one!

    Ha ha ha ha.

    Justice DeLayed is justice DeLivered! I like this decision moonbats.

  12. 13

    rhp6033 spews:

    GT at 26: Those are all good questions, I don’t have the answers. The media would love a re-match, and would play it as a “Rocky II” scenario. And Rossi does have a strong following in the rural areas where the “keep government out of my backyard” theme plays well. But I guess the real test will be in the early fund-raising. Will the big conservative bucks go to Rossi before the primaries, or will they go to someone else? Rossi has a big name recognition factor in the primaries which may be difficult to overcome, but not if there is a big media buy and an effective whispering campaign among Republican operatives to the effect that “Rossi can’t win, we’d better find somebody else”.

  13. 15

    LeftTurn spews:

    You have a theme going here Goldy. Competence – the republicans need some. Of course we can’t expect much from Dino. He lied about being a real estate broker when in fact he is only a real estate agent. When called on the lie, he said there really wasn’t any difference between the two. When the Realator board begged to differ, he said he didn’t understand there was a difference and then later tried to clean it all up by simply saying he mis-spoke. Mis-spoke in GOP terms means, “You caught me lying so I guess I mis-spoke.”

    Not that any rightie cares but lying about being a real estate broker when you are not, is a crime. Guess rule of law is sort of a subjective thing with republicans.

  14. 16

    Living in the 8th spews:

    Looking forward to a Rossi governorship. Coming in ’08.

    I think he keeps mum because Gregoire always copies everything he does/says. Remember ’04? when stuff she was saying wasn’t gaining traction, so she started aping Rossi ideas?

  15. 18

    Harry Tuttle spews:

    Ralph Munro hasn’t much of an answer to why Rossi is running in 2008:

    “Don’t believe that Dino Rossi is going to have just a free ride into the governor’s chair. There are some people who believe that. (But) frankly, Chris Gregoire is doing a good job and she’s going to be very tough to beat…”

    The wingnuts here may think Rossi will waltz into Olympia, but not everyone does.

  16. 21

    Tree Frog Farmer spews:

    The wingnuts are out of touch with average people. Look at the disconnect between their demogogic radio-shouters and accurate polling information.

  17. 22

    Had Enough Yet? spews:

    Rossi Files Unprecedented 8th Run for Governor
    By DJ Savage
    May 12, 2032

    Failed slumlord Dino Rossi filed today for an unprecedented eighth consecutive run for governor of Washington State. Rossi will run for the first time on the Independent-Oddfellow ticket. Rossi has run in every gubernatorial election in Washington since 2004, failing to advance beyond the primary in the last six tries.

    Rossi gained national attention in the 2004 election when, running as a Republican, he lost to Democrat Christine Gregoire by just 129 votes, a margin of 0.0045%. His subsequent legal challenges to the result were unsuccessful. Rossi has also named part-time net-journalist and long time political ally Stefan Sharkansky as his campaign manager.

    Rossi joins a crowded field led by Republican Reagan Dunn hoping to unseat first term Democratic Governor Dean Logan.

    The once successful real estate investor fell on hard times after it was discovered that a Renton apartment building that he purchased and renovated in 2009 had been insulated with shredded voter registrations and asbestos waste. The resulting litigation proved financially devastating to Rossi, and he filed bankruptcy in 2012. Since 2015 he has shared a trailer in Algona with Sharkansky.

  18. 23

    Particle Man spews:

    Don’t forget the whole Rossi hestory of running a felons scam opperation why he was doing time for bilking old folks and banks out of millions, the fact that no republican opponent has ever endorsed him after a primary as result of dirty tactics and the there is the whole prostitute thing while on a state trade mission.
    Is this empty loud mouth really governor material. I think not.

  19. 24

    Particle Man spews:

    Funny “had enough yet”.
    In 2028 news reports Rossi looses in primary to none other than Mike the Mover.
    Also in 2023 Rossi publishes biography where he tells the story of the knife fight that caused the large scar on his cheeky cheek. The young lady involved was unarmed.

  20. 25

    For the Clueless spews:

    Forgot to mention that Sharkansky was working feverishly in the trailer on his “definitive history” of the 2004 WA State Goobernatorial election, “due any day now”. However, a publisher is yet to be found.

  21. 26

    Jack Burton spews:

    “God Bless America” is no different than “God Save the Queen.”

    Although they are not specifically mentioned it does NOT exclude other countries.

    Are you really that Godless to get this so twisted around?

    BTW: God Bless the moonbats (They need all the help thay can get.)

  22. 29

    Particle Man spews:

    Interesting, rhp6033 but the following should have read as amended:
    If he won, they would only have an incompetent and corrupt governor

  23. 30

    Harry Tuttle aka voter advocate spews:


    No, “My Country ’tis of Thee” is the same as “God Save the Queen”.

    Of course, the American watchword is “God helps them that helps themselves”, which we do in many ways.

    Take one example — gasoline consumption. Canada, Australia, China, European Union and Japan all have fleet mileage standards from 5 MPG to 20 MPG greeater than the United States.

    Are you really so Godless that you ignore God’s instruction to be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the Earth?

  24. 31

    RLL spews:

    Dino to State: Your spending is out of control.
    State to Dino: But I have all of these serious needs. Where should I cut back?
    Dino to State: That is not a question that can really be answered.
    State to Dino: Huh? What does that mean? If you can’t identify anything I should cut how do you know that my spending is out of control?
    Dino to State: Becuase I had to pay a tax today and I don’t like that. That means you’re spending too much.
    State to Dino: But where would you have me cut back?
    Dino to State: That is not a question that can really be answered.
    State to Dino: You’re a jerk. Shut the hell up and leave me alone.

  25. 32

    Green Thumb spews:

    Rhp, that’s a sophisticated and quite convincing analysis. My follow-up question is: Do the back room dealers have enough power to stop Rossi? The media seems to see him as a front-runner, and if he energizes the grass roots that could overcome opposition by the party elite.

    Beyond that, power abhors a vacuum. If Rossi were to be stopped, someone of equal or greater stature must come forward. Do you see the insiders rallying around one candidate, or split by competing loyalties? If latter, doesn’t that make it easier for Rossi?

  26. 33

    Particle Man spews:

    RLL… Rossi is just exploiting the flip side of the fact that people want many things from government but do not want to pay for them. It is a basic tactic to talk about cutting but not spell out the consiquences. Polls show that it works though. He is no fool. Just a shallow and free criminal. A flimflam man selling people the lies they want to buy.

  27. 34

    Particle Man spews:

    In the end if the press keeps giving him a free ride, all people will remember is: Rossi… ah, he’s that guy that wants to cut my taxes. The appeal is no different than: Hey little girl want a piece of candy? Man. When will people wise up? Answer: Never