Offering frequent news and analysis from the majestic Evergreen State and beyond, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's unconventional perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Washington's Catholic bishops urge voters to reject Tim Eyman's Initiative 1033

In another sign that opposition to Initiative 1033 is growing stronger, Washington State's Catholic bishops today added their voices to those of many other Christian faith leaders by publishing a statement urging voters to reject Tim Eyman's jobs-killing wealth transfer scheme.

The statement will be distributed to parishes throughout Washington. Parishes do not have to include the statement in their bulletins, although many do.
The statement says, in part:
The bishops of Washington State oppose Initiative 1033. We recognize that many people find state and local taxes burdensome. Tax policy and government funding, however, must take into consideration the needs of those who rely on adequate public support for education, health care and other essential services. Initiative 1033 would establish an arbitrary formula for limiting taxes and spending without regard to the needs of others, and therefore, for us it does not meet the test of distributive justice.

The bishops of Washington State urge all Catholics to vote after informing their conscience on this issue through prayer, Scripture reading and study.
The full text is available from our grassroots campaign hub.

Also worth reading is the Washington Association of Churches' letter urging voters to reject Initiative 1033. That letter states, in part:
We understand the impulse to minimize taxes when our own budgets are strained, but our religions call us to act out of the abundance we’ve been given, not out of scarcity. Saving a few tax dollars while needs across our state go unmet is not in keeping with our religious beliefs. To live up to our moral responsibility for the common good, we must make sure that the budget cuts we saw in this recession year do not become permanent in Washington – we must raise our voices against Initiative 1033.
The letter is signed by nearly two dozen faith leaders - bishops, pastors, ministers - and more are adding their voices every day.

A nearly unprecedented coalition, representing Washingtonians from all walks of life, has come together to oppose Initiative 1033 because it would trap our state in a permanent recession, bankrupting our common wealth and redirecting sales taxes to pay for a special property tax cut for the rich.

Tim Eyman has sneered that "groups don't vote, people do", but he understands perfectly well that if people understand the true cost and the true consequences of Initiative 1033, they won't vote for it. That's why he stays relentlessly on message and refuses to engage in a honest debate with us.

This election will determine what the future of Washington State looks like. If Tim Eyman gets his way, that future will be very, very grim. We owe it to ourselves and our children to vote responsibly... and say NO to Initiative 1033.


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