Inside Opinion

What's on the minds of Tacoma News Tribune editorial writers

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Tag: election 2012


Need a reason to fill out that ballot? We’ll give you 10

One reason to vote: You get to wear this snazzy sticker.

This editorial will appear in Sunday’s print edition.

Crunch time for voters arrives Tuesday. If you haven’t returned your ballot yet, remember that it must be postmarked by midnight on Election Day or put in one of many area drop boxes by 8 p.m. in order to be counted.

Not motivated enough this year? As a public service, we’ve come up with the top 10 reasons to return that ballot.

10. You get free license to complain if the candidates or ballot measures you voted for fall short on Election Day. There’s a little-known political etiquette rule that goes something like this: If you didn’t vote, then keep your yap shut.

9. Remember 2004. Even if you feel that your vote for president means little (the prognosticators tell us that Washington’s electoral votes are firmly in Barack Obama’s column), many down-ballot races and ballot measures need your vote. Read more »


Our endorsements in 30th and 31st district House races

This editorial will appear in Tuesday’s print edition.

Four state House seats are up for grabs Nov. 6 in the 30th and 31st legislative districts.

The districts have geography and politics in common. Both include parts of King and Pierce counties, and both are swing districts that send Democrats and Republicans to the Legislature.

The 30th District’s population center is Federal Way in South King County and includes a small chunk of northern Pierce County. The 31st includes Auburn, Enumclaw, Edgewood, Bonney Lake, Buckley and Sumner.

Here are our endorsements:

Read more »


Dunn for attorney general, Watkins for auditor

This editorial will appear in Friday’s print edition.

With state Attorney General Rob McKenna running for governor and state Auditor Brian Sonntag retiring, voters have to fill their big shoes Nov. 6.

The attorney general contest presents a particularly tough choice. Democrat Bob Ferguson of Seattle and Republican Reagan Dunn of Maple Valley are about as evenly matched as two candidates could be. Both are moderate, personable attorneys who serve on the King County Council – Ferguson since 2003, Dunn since 2005.

They’re not far apart on most of the important issues, and both have shown independent streaks with their

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Give Maria Cantwell a third term in the U.S. Senate

Maria Cantwell

This editorial will appear in Thursday’s print edition.

Democrat Maria Cantwell has a smart, respectable Republican challenger for her U.S. Senate seat – freshman state Sen. Michael Baumgartner of Spokane.

Baumgartner is particularly knowledgeable about Middle East policy, but he doesn’t make a good case for replacing the cerebral, hard-working incumbent. The News Tribune editorial board recommends that voters give Cantwell a third six-year term.

A former state legislator who served a term in the U.S. House, Cantwell was elected to the U.S. Senate in 2000 by defeating the incumbent, Slade Gorton. Since the economy went south, she has focused with laser-like intensity on creating jobs, helping business and pushing for Wall Street reforms.

Cantwell isn’t one for partisan bickering, instead working to educate her colleagues and build coalitions for legislation that is often more wonky than “sexy.” Prime examples are her efforts to reauthorize the Export-Import Bank, an agency that helps finance exports of many manufacturers, including Boeing; to pass tax credits for employers who hire veterans; and to invest in freight and transportation infrastructure. Read more »


This poll has a clear winner (Spoiler alert: It’s Obama)

Forget Gallup, Pew, Rasmussen and the other polls. They all show either a dead heat between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney or Obama slightly ahead – but still within the margin of error.

Over at 7-Eleven, there’s no such wishy-washiness. Its “abashedly unscientific” poll, which has predicted the winner in the last three presidential races, shows Obama clearly out in front: 58 to 42 percent as of Wednesday afternoon.

Customers make their preference known by buying their drinks in either a blue Obama cup or a red Romney cup.

Click here to check out its red state/blue state map. Click on individual states to see how 7-Eleven customers voted there.

Washington is slightly more pro-Obama than the national average: 60 to 40 percent. Romney is running ahead of Obama in only four states: Idaho, West Virginia, South Carolina and New Hampshire. Not in Utah? That’s surprising. And the crucial battleground state of Ohio – which no Republican winner has ever lost – is staunchly pro-Obama at 67 to 42 percent. Read more »


Democrats twist truth in attacking McKenna on education

This editorial will appear in Wednesday’s print edition.

Republican gubernatorial candidate Rob McKenna says he wants to add $1 billion to the state’s public education budget. Now some Democrats are claiming that he favored cutting money for the state’s schools.

Somebody’s peddling an election season falsehood, and it’s not McKenna.

It would be convenient for McKenna’s opponent, Democrat Jay Inslee, if the Republican were trying to strangle K-12 funding. That stance would destroy McKenna’s standing among the centrist and independent voters he needs to get elected.

But that’s not the case, as the Seattle Times reported Monday. Read more »


Too few primary voters, but they made good choices

This editorial will appear in Thursday’s print edition.

Sure, the Olympics are a distraction, many of us are on vacation and the weather’s been so sunny that perhaps it’s thrown Northwesterners for a loop. But does that explain the lower-than-expected turnout in Tuesday’s primary?

Going to an all-mail election statewide was supposed to boost turnout. After all, there’s no excuse for failing to vote when the ballot is right there on the dining room table.

Unless a whole lot of voters waited until the very last minute to return their ballots, it’s looking like turnout won’t reach the 46 percent that Secretary of State Sam Reed had predicted. That makes it hard to decipher what the results indicate about voter sentiment and what they portend for the Nov. 6 general election. Because this is a presidential election year, turnout is likely to be more than double what it was in the primary, possibly around 85 percent.
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The election letters are flooding in

We’ve been running letters to the editor favoring one candidate or another for a few weeks now. Many of these will be online only – especially when we get the sense that an aggressive letter-writing campaign is under way, which has already happened this election cycle.

We try to run a representative sample, and when possible run letters together in print when they are about different candidates in the same race. That’s not always possible due to space and letter flow, but we do try.

One rule: We don’t run letters from candidates themselves. Sometimes one slips through if

Read more »