News Nov 7, 2012 at 4:00 am

You’re Going to Be the Governor, It Seems, so Here’s What We Need You to Do


There should be new revenue coming in from the tax on marijuana. Washington's financial picture could also benefit from going forward with public banking, (ie., the Bank of North Dakota)creating a state bank that could invest in our community. And we've got to watch these charter schools (if it passes) like hawks to keep them from siphoning off funds that rightfully belong to the public schools.
Big props to Mary Baechler (my mudder) running as the democratic candidate in Yakima County. She nabbed 40% of the vote, performing better than both Jay Inslee and gay marriage. More importantly, winning 40% of Yakima with a budget of only 30K is astounding. Additionally, she ran an incredible ground game, with a grass roots focus on the Latino vote (she harassed the state dems to put their page in Spanish) and voter registration.

I know King County likes to pat itself on the back, but congratulations to her for ginning up Dem support in the east, in a race that we were planning to let go uncontested. If/When Jay Inslee's confirmed, she'll be part of the reason he succeeded.

@1- and the Bank of North Dakota guarantees student loans to all residents (I made my last Student Loans of North Dakota) payment a while back...and man what a nice thing for a state to actually give a shit about higher ed for all residents.

The unfortunate reality about taxes is that they are just as toxic now as they always have been. Both advisory measures on modest tax "increases" were voted down handily, and the newest Tim Eyman 2/3 initiative passed overwhelmingly.

Inslee not only needs to be real about taxes, but he needs to be effective in explaining to Washington voters that taxes are actually OK, and pay for things we really care about.

And that is going to be his toughest job overall.
Having worked with Jay before, I think we will see plenty of progress on the second and third issue (marijuana and environment). Marijuana is an easy one from a political standpoint (given the results). The key is to get together with our federal representatives (who he has worked with before) to try and get the feds to let us run the show. Given the makeup of our delegation and the fact that we have a second term president whose opinion on issues have evolved before, I think this is quite possible.

I also expect him to support environmental issues (especially opposing the coal train) because he is a strong environmentalist. He will probably spend a lot of political capital on that as well as pushing for more public transit.

The budget is a tricky one, given 1185 (by the way -- we really didn't win everything). The courts might throw it out, but it is obvious that people want more money for schools and other services, but somehow don't want to pay for it. As long as their are idiots who believe this is possible it will be hard for anyone to do what needs to be done. If Inslee can somehow convince the Seattle Times editorial staff that we need to raise taxes, then maybe things could change. Otherwise, I expect us to muddle along like we have for the past few years.
Go, Jay, GO!!!!!!!
Seattle Times should no longer to be referred to as a newspaper. Obviously, the line between ownership and editorial page was foresaken in the interest of a personal political gain for the owner. A serious violation of a public trust. I will never buy it again.
@4 & @5: Yeah, I'm surprised that Tim Eyesore's latest Rethug plot actually passed, too!
@7: Agreed!
I was talking with some state senators about Eyman last nite. But the Gov needs to realize that he should - first day in office - pardon anyone in jail for MJ personal possession and save the taxpayers money.
My only real issue is hydrogen fuel cells.

Hopefully Jay Inslee and all democrats will become more pro Hydrogen.
to: Will in Seattle

you wrote: I was talking with some state senators about Eyman last nite.

what'd they say?
I ain't telling you, TimE. Self-deport already, will ya?
Awwww, that's cute. Underfunding your schools. As a Salt Laker, let's just say that the (defeated) Democratic candidate for governor's BIG proposal was to take us from 50th in the nation in per-pupil funding to . . . wait for it! . . . 30th! "We're number 50! We're number 50!"
@10 "pardon anyone in jail for MJ personal possession and save the taxpayers money."

If Inslee has any pull, he'll get Gregoire to do it on her way out the door.

He just has to shut up about it until it becomes popular a few years from now.
My worst nightmare: That Gov.-elect Jay-Dawgg (that's right, Jay, you've got to bury your Cougar past) will become BFFs with ant-pot idiot re-elect Brad Owen. How does THAT guy still have a job?
re: Taxes. Let's tax different things! Instead of taxing sales and employment, let's tax natural resource extraction (the harder to replace, the higher the tax), pollution (the harder to clean up, the higher the tax), and financial derivatives (those funny-money IOUs that the super rich like to buy when they should be investing their money into creating jobs).

This is not my idea, and you should read the book by Puget Sound-native John Michael Greer where he lays it all out for us. The Wealth Of Nature, New Society Publishers 2011.
1) Just give up on "no new taxes". How about "no increases on stuff we've already taxed to the hilt"?
2)I believe most of the revenue projection over cannabis products is overinflated, not taking into account how the price will drop once the kinks are worked out of the legal processes. So just drop that particular input by half, don't count on it for at least 2 years, and if it's more, put the windfall revenue into education without other clawbacks. Oh, yeah: howabout releasing/ pardoning the folks doing time for just simple'll cut correctional costs by a nice shiny one.
3)1185 & its Eyman-miscegenated kin: I believe these are still in suspension due to conflicting with the State Constitiution. Somebody light a fire under the Supreme Court, please?
4)Coal trains bad, mass transit good.
5)ALL charter schools must be constituted as NOT FOR PROFIT entities. Reduce the chance of wasting those education dollars we're underfunding.
UPDATE: JUST when I was celebrating the victory of Jay Inslee for our next governor, I learned to my shock and horror that Rob GOP-puppet McKenna isn't giving up, and he's got lawyers out making sure of Republican voter "protection"!!!

Everybody----we need to make sure Democratic voter protection is ensured, too!!!
Jay, I was very much against Rob McKenna. I was in the Boy Scouts with him..and got my Eagle Scout with him, my brother and 5 other young men (my dad was the ScoutMaster). Rob's ethics back then were questionable at best (I never trusted him after an incident) and I have watched his rise to power over the years with great trepidation. Over the course of the election, I have done my best to support you and to suggest others do the same. I knew what it would look like with Rob in the Governor's mansion. Please don't make me regret the decision to support you. Jay, you need to be truly bold at this time. If not, when Robbie comes back (and he will), if you have a poor record, Rob will tear you to shreds. You can be sure that we have not seen the end of "Get a Job" Rob. Rob's next strategy will be to remold his image into an even more tolerant Republican and people in King County might actually fall for it next time. You were pretty much an outlier in this race and you need to stay clear, focused and execute well. Here's to truly hoping you pull it off. Prove Rob's wife wrong about people not reading "The Stranger". Take the advice in this article and do a great job!
Jay!! First of all, congratulations!! Now, what I expect of you; champion our new, groundbreaking and progressive pot law. YOU must work hard with the Feds to ensure it's enactment and the cooperations of the DEA, etc. Do everything within your powers to make sure that NO coal train ever enters the State of Washington again...ever. Simple fact of the matter is that taxes must and will be raised to fund education and other necessary services. Your predecessor is a moron...don't lie to us like she has done for eight years. You're better than that.
@21 has a few good points.

Don't do like Christine did and piss off Seattle. Without us you'll never get anything done. Ever.

Oh, and kill that stupid SR-99 Deep Bore Tunnel. Paul Allen and Bill Gates can pay for it themselves if they want, but you can't pay for both it and the SR-520 bridge.
Jay, you are my man. Just make sure you don't forget your environmental roots. I don't want my water, land, and air clean, thank you. Not so interested in eating chemical infested food or drowning in a hurricane flood.
Governor Jay Inslee, you ROCK THE HOUSE!!!

Bless you, @21, for your good points--chiefly NO on coal trains---ever!!
It is truly a banner election for Washington State and the rest of the country!!!
As I read through this I see that so many other Americans agree with me, - who have traveled abroad;- or know about what makes countries like Germany and UK so much better on infrastructure: Roads;- schools;- power distribution. etc etc. It makes me feel good to know that I am not the only one.

You get what you pay for. You have to pay taxes. Nothing is for free.

My German friend was shocked and scared when the power went out last year when staying at my house. She had never seen a power outage since she was born. (Germany and UK have all the power lines underground)

I personally have never seen one since I left Africa in 1989. I have never saw one in UK since I was a kid;- just after the second world war.

Since I have been here I have seen dozens. It only takes a Sparrow fart and the power goes off in this state.

I am an electrical engineer and the US system is appalling bad and inefficient. It needs to be upgraded to meet the 21st century.

America, (my chosen country) is falling behind the rest of the world because of greed, and because of an - "I am alright Jack and screw you" attitude;- because no one wants to pay the price of upgrading America.

They would sooner spend money on crappy Apps for a cell phone and stupid gizmos. The fact that the roads and freeways are like cart tracks compared to most of Europe is a disgrace for this advanced nation.

I'm not rich by any means, but if the greed motivated rich a'holes are not prepared to pay a little bit more, I guess I can manage a few extra bucks a month if it will help get this country going again.

" I don't know how you could get there without new revenue" (as he rides off into the sunset floating on a golden returement plan with full medical/dental and eyecare... It is only revenue if it seems like you're making it, and politicians feel so entitled to be the best paid, lowest achieving managers around. Pay for your own lunches and a lot of people are confident that the minimum legal requirements could be met. THE MINIMUM REQUIRED BY LAW.
Thank you, thank you, thank you to Eli Sanders for his article to Jay Inslee. He says the things that need to be said. I think we could expand on these points just a bit more.

Legalized marijuana and new revenue for schools: Both are good points in Eli’s article, but why not put the two together. Our state will surely save gobs of money not chasing, prosecuting, and punishing citizens for a little pot. It should be able to raise gobs more by turning that black market into a legal and taxed market. Some of that money should surely find it’s way to our schools. With a commitment of new revenue we could even follow President Obama’s lead with Race to the Top and convince the teachers union to accept better teacher/student ratios, merit pay, and better pay overall for better ease in dismissing burned out teachers and administrators. We could help make teaching a high honor again.

Transportation: The most important idea in Eli’s article is “public transportation that makes sense”. I’m often struck by the things which do not make sense. Why do we have to lug our bags a half mile from the airport terminal to the light rail only to find it’s not running. Why not have a sign close to the terminal. Why can’t we coordinate the Metro with the Rapid Ride and water taxi so we don’t waste half an hour waiting for this connection? Why do we have bus stops so close together my weak arm could throw a rock from one to the other? Wouldn’t less stops and faster buses be better? Jay, please be sure to actually ride the light rail, Rapid Ride, Sound Transit, and Metro so you can experience what we, the users, experience. If you can cure the wooden headedness in Metro make these guys work together to do things which make sense you will be the best governor in the world.

Dave Leffmann

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