The only way to ameliorate righteous anger over initiative kingpin Tim Eyman is to revisit the wisdom of Woodward and Bernstein (even if that wisdom is an apocryphal exchange tailored to a film audience.)
"Follow the money," Hal Holbrook says (Or, more accurately, Hal Holbrook playing Deep Throat in 1976's All the President's Men.) "What do you mean, where?" Robert Redford (Bob Woodward) asks. "Oh, I can't tell you that," says Deep Throat. "But you could tell me that," says Woodward.
The Seattlepi.com's Joel Connelly does tell you that, and the colorful array of oil and booze interests underwriting Eyman's I-1185 sounds like it was cribbed from Christopher Buckley's Thank you for Smoking.
"Tim Eyman is turning into big corporations’ favorite populist in Washington state, and the Mukilteo-based initiative promoter is eagerly embracing their embrace," Connelly writes. "Liquor interests have joined Big Oil in fueling the paid signature campaign for Initiative 1185, the latest in Eyman’s longtime campaign to require a two-thirds vote of both houses in the Washington Legislature to enact new new revenue measures or close tax loopholes."
Is there a plausible explanation for Seattle's spike in violent crime? Seattle statistics run counter to the national average, with the country experiencing a 4 percent drop in violent offenses. Ideally, it would soon become evident that the bump is just an aberration (as stat professors say) and does not signify a broader Northwest trend.
"Violent crime in Seattle increased but property crime decreased in 2011 compared with the previous year, according to statistics released today by the FBI," the Seattle Times' John de Leon writes. "Violent crime — homicide, rape, robbery and aggravated assault — went from 3,515 incidents in 2010 to 3,664 last year. Meanwhile, property crime — burglary, larceny/theft and car theft — dropped from 33,186 in 2010 to 31,792 in 2011. According to the statistics, there were 19 homicides in Seattle in 2010, compared with 20 last year. Already this year there have been 21 homicides in the city."
The benefit of a cross-party endorsement is it gives partisans proactive absolution. You can vote for someone from the other party and not feel (too) sinful. With one-third of Washingtonians identifying as independents, cross-the-aisle endorsements can be an additional feather. Nevertheless, the endorsers need to be big fish. Democratic State Auditor Brian Sonntag, who is heading "Democrats for McKenna," is a key political figure, but he also tipped his hat to Republican Susan Hutchison in the race for King County Executive in 2009.
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