Robin Farris’ campaign to recall Pierce County Assessor-Treasurer Dale Washam didn’t make the November ballot, but it has caught the eye of Washington Post columnist George Will.
Will, a staunch critic of campaign finance limits, takes on Washington state’s restrictions on donations to recall efforts, calling them “highly unreasonable – and unconstitutional” in his Thursday column.
Farris herself is no fan of those restrictions, having accepted the Institute for Justice’s offer earlier this year to challenge the limits in court. In July, U.S. District Court Judge Robert J. Bryan issued a preliminary injunction that temporarily nullifies the state law that caps individual contributions to recall campaigns at $800.
Bryan’s decision prevented the state Public Disclosure Commission from enforcing that cap. Farris cheered the decision, but has since said that having to fight for the ability to raise money in bigger chunks cost her campaign precious time. She came within 1,108 signatures of triggering the largest recall campaign in state history.
The Institute for Justice is continuing to press its case against the contribution limits in federal court, despite the demise of the recall.
Look for Will’s column in Thursday’s News Tribune.