What does the late Sen. Henry “Scoop” Jackson have to do with the two-thirds majority and I-1185? Plenty, says sponsor Tim Eyman
It was something of a stretch even for a politician considered a master of political theater. But according to Tim Eyman, the recent reversal of opinion by The Herald of Everett on the two-thirds tax-vote initiative can be blamed on a guy who died almost 30 years ago.
Here’s how he gets there…The Herald has endorsed his past two-thirds vote initiatives…the Everett-based newspaper recently hired a new editorial page editor and has a new publisher…that editorial page editor is the son of the late Sen. Henry Jackson…it has now reversed its position on the latest version of the tax limit, Eyman’s Initiative 1185.
Therefore, “Scoop Jackson’s son (not surprisingly) comes out against making it tougher to raise taxes.”
I’m not sure why it isn’t a surprise since I’m not sure I ever heard the longtime U.S. senator express an opinion on the two-thirds tax issue before he died in 1983. Given that he held a complex set of opinions – liberal on issues of the environment and labor, conservative on defense and foreign affairs – it might even be hard to guess what his fiscal views might be today.
And Peter is hardly an ingenue, having been involved in various fields from screenplay writing to speech writing for decades, all without his dad’s advice.
For Eyman, however, that’s not enough to separate the two.
“Of course it’s now their editorial board and they can have any opinion they want without listening to both sides — it’s still a free country,” Eyman wrote. “But it’s quite doubtful that Scoop Jackson’s son previously supported I-1053 but now opposes I-1185. It’s more likely that one of the no voters on I-1053 simply has a louder megaphone this time.”
The odd reference to the legendary senator was too much for a Seattle House member who knew him well. Rep. Reuven Carlyle issued his own statement Thursday.
“There comes a time when public officials have a moral responsibility to stand up for civic dialogue. Today is one of those days and this is one of those times.
Tim Eyman’s unbelievable, nasty personal insult to Everett Herald Editorial page editor Peter Jackson, a treasured friend and son of one of our state’s legendary public officials in the late Scoop Jackson, went a step too far outside the dignity of Washington’s history of integrity in politics.
Merely because the Everett Herald objectively reconsidered its previous support for Mr. Eyman’s supermajority initiative, a patronizing personal attack on the paper, Mr. Jackson and the memory of Senator Jackson (whom I had the honor of serving as a page for in the United States Senate) was uncalled for. We are better than this as a state and Mr. Eyman demeans us all in demeaning Sen. Jackson’s memory.”