By now you’ve likely seen the TV news clips or read in the papers that Tim Eyman delivered enough signatures to the Secretary of State to qualify I-892 (Slots for Tots) for the ballot. I was present for the festivities, so I thought I’d just pass along a few first hand observations.
Apparently, nothing says widespread public support like spending half a million dollars of gambling industry money on paid signature gatherers. But the most telling indication of I-892′s popularity was the fact that Tim showed up alone.
The image of Tim in his tailored suit, lugging boxes of signatures all on his lonely, was actually rather comical. You’d think for $3100 a week Tim could at least afford a $30 hand truck, if not a friend. When he was done, he wiped his brow exclaiming “that’s something you don’t want to do more than once a year,” a comment that doesn’t bode well for I-864 (and elicits a number of inappropriate jokes regarding his marital relations.)
Tim then stood before the cameras to briefly spout lies. He even brought a chart as a visual aid — or as it is technically known in the public relations business, more lies.
Finally, he took questions from the media — a rather one-sided exchange considering he wouldn’t actually give any answers in return — before sprouting horns and wings and flying back to his fortress of evil.
Just kidding about the horns.
Anyway, it really wasn’t much of a press conference, the most interesting part being what he omitted. You know, words like “slot machines” and “gambling” and “I’m a lying, thieving, blowhard.”
In the end, the battle over I-892 will be a battle over the truth. Tim is going to try to sell this as a tax cut initiative, whereas anybody with a shred of honesty is going to explain that it is about the most massive expansion of gambling in state history.
If the truth wins, I-892 loses.