Car Tabs Cut to $30, Gary Locke Takes to His Bed

SEATTLE -- The passage of I-695 has raised more questions than it has answered, with citizens wondering what government services will be trimmed to make up for the $750 million tax cut Washington state voters treated themselves to last week. "We'll just have to wait and see," said Governor Gary Locke late last night. During a press conference conducted from his bed in the governor's mansion in Olympia, Locke seemed bleary-eyed and distracted, and the room smelled faintly of ammonia. Locke took to his bed after the recent vote with what his aides are describing as "the vapors." "The governor's doctors have recommended bed rest, rubber sheets, and minimal fluid intake," said Locke Cabinet Member Martha Choe. "Since Gary's election in 1996, Republicans have controlled the state House and Senate, so Gary's position has been largely ceremonial. The passage of I-695 means Gary will have to take positions, propose legislation, and govern. Gary isn't accustomed to governing on the statewide level, and none of us are sure he's up to it. Gary's panic attacks, bed wetting, and seizures are the least of our worries."

Last night state GOP Chairman Dale Foreman called on Gary Locke to dry his tears -- and his undies. "I'd suggest the governor resign if the will of Washington state voters has this kind of an effect on his bladder control. And I would like to remind voters that the bed Gary is wetting right now belongs to the taxpayers -- not to Gary Locke or the Democratic Party. Who will pay to replace that mattress? Taxpayers, that's who." Foreman, expected to challenge Locke for Governor in 2000, went on to point out that Locke has frequently been on the wrong side of the voters on statewide ballot initiatives or referenda. Last year, he opposed Referendum 49, which passed, providing a $30 cut in the car-tab tax. Locke also opposed I-200, the anti-affirmative action initiative passed by state voters last year, and supported I-677, the pro-gay rights initiative rejected by voters in 1997.

"He's out of touch," Foreman concluded. "And he's a bed-wetter. The people of Washington state deserve better."