Letters to the Editor

Your views in 200 words or less

Tag: initiatives


INITIATIVES: We already have access to cost information

Re: “Voter initiatives need a price tag up front” (Off the wire, 1-6).

We already have the means to have the price tag up front via the statements against the initiative printed in the voter’s pamphlet.

If the Legislature feels the cost is high, it needs to disclose this via the voter pamphlet and further disclose how they came up with the cost estimate.


LETTERS: Writers get it right and wrong

The writer who complained about “the tyranny of a tax-happy government” (letter, 6-6) should remember that those taxes that the rich don’t pay and the corporations don’t pay are ones the rest of us have to pay.

If you want police, firefighters and good roads, taxes have to be paid. If the rich get richer and don’t pay their fair share of taxes and the corporations get tax breaks or take their profits off-shore, that means the rest of us have to make up the difference.

The letter writer (TNT, 6-6) who complained that “those who write initiatives

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PETITIONS: Be willing to stand behind signature

Re: “If you sign an initiative petition, do you need privacy shield?” (Peter Callaghan column, 10-6).

People who don’t want their names known after signing a petition are the same spineless wonders as people who write anonymous letters.

If you strongly believe in something, stand behind your conviction. As we say when playing poker, “Put up or shut up.”


EYMAN: There’s irony in initiative argument

Re: “New initiative reinforces voter-approved I-1053″ (Viewpoint, 5-13).

It’s ironic that Tim Eyman calls on the state constitution to help enforce an initiative-generated law. Ironic because Eyman produced the initiatives (601,1053) requiring a two-thirds majority for legislative actions raising taxes despite the fact that it conflicts with the state constitution. (The constitution mandates a simple majority for all legislative actions.)

Now he insists the Legislature must follow the constitution to meet requirements which may be “unconstitutional.” Eyman’s duplicity regarding the constitution reflects a confusion about, or a desire to undermine, its role in proper lawmaking. That role can only be

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INITIATIVES: Process threatened by corporate money

Re: “Initiative reform: First show us the problem” (editorial, 2-17) and “State legislators should leave the initiative process alone” (Pam Roach Viewpoint, 2-26).

State Sen. Pam Roach and The News Tribune may not think there is any problem with our initiative process, but this voter sees a red alert. The initiative reform bill (SB 5297) is a mere baby step towards keeping our treasured initiative process from becoming an auction misused by wealthy special interests to impact the voters. The initiative should be strengthened, not discarded.

The basic problem is the current cancerous takeover by corporate money, which is furthered

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INITIATIVES: Bill is sensible consumer protection

Re: “Initiative reform: First, show us the problem” (editorial, 2-17).

If you knew a storm was coming, would you board up your house? Would you go to the store beforehand to make sure you had provisions?

That’s exactly what state Rep. Chris Reykdal’s bill on ballot measures is doing.

Oregon has seen terrible abuses to its initiative system. It’s caught paid signature gatherers holding fraud parties. Just last year, three signature gatherers were charged with ID theft. A quick search found that Montana, Arizona, Missouri, Nebraska, Colorado, Florida and Maine have all seen similar cases of fraud and forgery.


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INITIATIVES: We need to guard against paid, out-of-state signature gatherers

Re: “Initiative reform: First, show us the problem” (editorial, 2-17).
I solidly support Rep. Chris Reykdal’s legislation on ballot measure reform and believe it protects the initiative process.
As the editorial mentioned, most ballot measures qualify these days due to paid signature gatherers. We rarely see a true grass-roots effort. Last year, we saw almost total corporate domination. Wal-Mart, Costco, British Petroleum and other large corporations were the major funders behind the initiatives. We also saw hordes of out-of-state paid signature gatherers. You have to question what happened to our citizen initiative process.

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PETITIONS: Why not require registration?

Re: “Initiative reform: First, show us the problem” (editorial, 2-17).

I don’t know why anyone’s constitutional right to collect signatures on petitions is violated by requiring registration. In my opinion, people who are not Washington state voters have no such rights.

Nor should they have any rights to anonymity. We certainly don’t let our state legislators submit legislation or cast votes anonymously. Therefore people who set themselves up as citizen legislators, making laws that they expect the rest of us to obey, shouldn’t be allowed to be anonymous either.

Fraud is very common, though difficult to actually prosecute. I myself

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