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Tag: Nick Harper


Senate OKs new payday-like loan

Controversial legislation proposing a new type of ultra high-interest loan was fast tracked to the Senate floor today. In an unusual twist, one of the bill’s cosponsors, Sen. Nick Harper, D-Everett, even voted against it. It passed anyway, 30-to-18.

Harper said he didn’t understand why the bill, which would allow installment loans with effective interest rates nearing 220 percent, was being rushed to a vote when it still needed work. He said sending the bill to the House to get “fixed” was just “punting the ball.”

The move also started a 30-minute floor fight with vocal payday loan critic, Sen.

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No repercussions, so far, for Sen. Jim Kastama

After his effort to prevent the seating of a member of his own party failed, Sen. Jim Kastama said he hasn’t seen a backlash from his party’s leaders.

Senate leaders have kept him on the budget committee, the Puyallup Democrat pointed out, and as chair of a committee on economic development.

“There have been no repercussions,” he said. “I think my colleagues, I would say that probably a majority have come up and say they very much respect the argument that I put forward.”

They didn’t give him their votes, though. Only two centrist Democrats, Sens. Steve Hobbs and

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All eyes (at least all newsie eyes) are on the state Senate

Maybe it is because nothing usually happens on the Opening Day of the Legislative session.

Maybe it is because it is hard to take your eyes on a train wreck.

But the press desk in the Senate is jammed. We even dragged in a few extra chairs to make room. We all want to watch the drama of a move to refuse to seat state Sen. Nick Harper.

Harper is the Democrat who was helped by a shadow campaign in the top two primary that pushed incumbent Democratic Sen. Jean Berkey into third place. Sen. Jim Kastama, D-Puyallup, will move

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Morning update: Day 1

Good morning on Day 1 of Washington’s 62nd Legislature.

On each of the 105 days (and beyond?) of state lawmakers’ work in 2011, we’ll once again bring you a morning rundown of what to watch for in the day ahead.

Today we watch the culmination of an upstart’s surprisingly successful bid to join the elite, a bid that was rocked, maybe even tainted, by revelations that he — apparently unknowingly — benefited from secretive and illicit help. No, I’m not talking about Cam Newton, who takes on Oregon today in the national championship game.

I’m talking about Sen.-elect

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Would be an insult to voters not to seat me says Sen.-elect Nick Harper

Reacting to Thursday’s announcement that a fellow Democrat will move to deny him his seat in the state Senate, Sen.-elect Nick Harper of Everett issued this statement today:

It is insulting and damaging to deny representation to the 38th Legislative District by voting not to seat me in the Senate.  During these challenging times for our communities, the people of Everett, Marysville, and Tulalip must have a voice in Olympia.  In the words of The Everett Herald: “The 38th District needs and deserves Senate representation.”

My role and mission in the State Senate is very clear.  I am

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Puyallup Sen. Jim Kastama says he’ll introduce resolution to not seat fellow Democrat Nick Harper due to Moxie Media scandal

This clearly is not going to make Sen. Jim Kastama popular with his Democratic leaders. But the Puyallup lawmaker said he will introduce a resolution before newly elected Sen. Nick Harper is sworn in Monday to deny him his seat.

Kastama said he believes improper and illegal actions by a Seattle political consultant changed the results of a primary election that saw Harper defeat incumbent Democrat Jean Berkey.

“I cannot in good conscience vote to seat a senator whose election was altered by an illegal action,” Kastama said. “The documents I have seen, including signed affidavits, show there is no doubt that Moxie Media’s actions were illegal and that they were responsible for changing the outcome of the election.

“These actions shifted a sure primary election victory from Sen. Jean Berkey to a razor-thin victory for Rod Rieger, a candidate whose support and campaign efforts were largely nonexistent.”

Moxie Media and its co-owner Lisa Collins MacLean have been sued in civil court by state Attorney General Rob McKenna for four violations of campaign finance disclosure law. They arose out of her efforts to defeat Berkey on behalf of a coalition of labor and trial lawyers groups.

A state Public Disclosure Commission investigation found that MacLean purposefully delayed disclosure and created multiple layers of political action committees to make sure the source of money for the campaign was not made public until after the election.

Part of the effort to defeat Berkey, deemed not liberal enough by the interest groups, was to run a shadow campaign for conservative candidate Rieger, thus denying Berkey votes from both the left and the right. She ended up finishing third in the top-two primary and Harper went on to win the general election. Read more »