This editorial will appear in Tuesday’s print edition.
By now – a day after they handed the state Senate to Republicans – Sens. Rodney Tom and Tim Sheldon will have been excoriated as traitors, turncoats, back-stabbers and double-crossers by their fellow Democrats.
Conniving rascals they may be, but they’ve done the state of Washington a big favor.
Until Monday, 2013 was shaping up as another dreary stretch of same-old, same-old Democratic hegemony over House, Senate and governorship. The party’s leadership has grown a little too comfortable, a little too arrogant, a little too generous to public unions and other favored interest groups.
It does real damage to the state. For example, it’s the chief reason Washington has suffered from one of the nation’s most benighted approaches to public education.
Any reforms that promised to make schools more accountable faced dual execution squads in the Legislature, where the education committees of the House and Senate faithfully did the bidding of the Washington Education Association and other enforcers of the status quo.
The coup’s sweetest result: The Senate Early Learning and K-12 Education Committee falls into the hands of Republicans.
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