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.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Where does Mike McGavick stand on Initiative 912?

Last night, I was talking with fellow blogger David Goldstein of and going through PDC reports for the other committees opposing Initiative 912.

We noticed that Safeco Insurance Corp. has contributed $1,000 to Keep Washington Rolling, the business community led coalition formed to oppose Initiative 912.

A few months ago, Safeco's chief, Mike McGavick, announced he planned to leave Safeco and form an exploratory committee to pursue a possible run for U.S. Senate against incumbent Maria Cantwell.

Safeco recently announced that McGavick is going to stay on the job longer than expected.

Since McGavick seems to be running for the Senate and diving into politics, we want to know: where does he stand on Initiative 912?

If the company he currently leads is willing to contribute a thousand dollars to the opposition campaign, doesn't that mean McGavick must be opposed to Initiative 912?

Initiative 912 isn't just a statewide issue. It's also a federal issue - if we want the federal government to help pay for the cost of some of our major projects, such as the Alaskan Way Viaduct.

Our state's congressional delegation recently managed to secure over $200 million in federal funds for the Alaskan Way Viaduct.

If we pass Initiative 912, we lose - big time. We lose funding to pay for public safety improvements across Washington State, and we jeopardize the opportunity of getting more federal money.

The federal government isn't going to be interested in footing the bill for projects that we Washingtonians aren't even willing to pay for.

By donating to the NO on I-912 campaign, Safeco Insurance - and its chief executive, Mike McGavick - are sending a strong message that the state should invest in public safety improvements to transportation infrastructure.

If I had to guess, I'd say that Mike McGavick opposes Initiative 912. But if he's contemplating a run for a high profile office representing all of Washington, he should publicly declare where he stands on this very important statewide issue.

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