Say what you want about initiatives 1163 and 1183, they both appear to have passed by more than a comfortable margin. Costco's $22 million giant-jug-of-booze-approving I-1183 is currently passing 60-40 (so far, about $32 a vote), while SEIU's I-1163, which requires training, certification, and criminal background checks of home health care workers, is passing in all 39 counties, and by a landslide 67-33 margin statewide. Impressive.
So you'd think Gov. Chris Gregoire—who called a special session a couple years back to reinstate Tim Eyman's I-747, because presumably, it was the will of the people—would be more respectful of what voters want. Well... not so much.
On I-1163 (which, by the way, merely reinstated I-1029, which voters approved 73-27 in 2008):
“It’s critically important that our long-term care workers are among the finest in the field. However, the initiative had no way to fund the training. With our state facing a $2 billion shortfall, paying for this training will require new sources of revenue, or cuts to other essential programs. I’m committed to working with the Legislature to find a solution that meets the intent of voters and protects our seniors and most vulnerable, while protecting our state budget and other valuable services.”
That doesn't sound very committed. I mean, if you truly believe in the initiative process, you'd think the solution to I-1163 would be to just implement it, as overwhelmingly approved by voters. Twice. Why question their wisdom?
As for I-1183:
“The voters have spoken."
Gregoire goes on to voice concerns about unintended public safety consequences, but only suggests that she'll "closely monitor" I-1183's implementation. Nothing about "working with the Legislature ... to find a solution that meets the intent of voters," or anything wishy-washy like that.
I dunno... sounds like a bit of a double standard to me. But then, while our politicians sometimes fear the will the people, few of them ever really honor it.