Initiative 1029 is passing by a lopsided 73-27 percent margin, and how do the editors at the Seattle Times celebrate this exercise in direct democracy?
The Legislature and the governor should exercise their right to overturn this initiative immediately. That’s a tall order, because it would require two-thirds vote of both houses if lawmakers opt to do it within two years of passage.
Hear that? The Times thinks three quarters of its readers are idiots, easily deceived by an “artfully worded ballot measure.”
I’ve long argued that the intiative process is a crappy way to write legislation, and I don’t doubt that I-1029 might have benefited from a more deliberative process. But for a paper that routinely defends anti-tax, anti-government, anti-labor initiatives as inviolate expressions of “the will of the people,” this editorial reads as a masterful stroke of unselfconcious hypocrisy.
Had the execrable and unworkable I-985 passed on Tuesday, even by the slightest of margins, would the Times have demanded that the Legislature exercise its “right” to overturn the initiative? How about the blatantly unconstitutional and anti-democratic I-960, that passed by a narrow 51-49 percent margin, yet requires a two-thirds majority for any tax or fee increase? Would the Times cheer a legislative effort to exercise their “right” to overturn that initiative?
I don’t think so.
So be forewarned. The next time the Times editors defend an initiative or the initiative process by cynically appealing to “the will of the people,” I’m going to shove today’s editorial so far up Fairview’s fanny they’ll have newsprint coming out of their mouths.