Read a Pacific Northwest, liberal perspective on world, national, and local politics. From majestic Redmond, Washington - the Northwest Progressive Institute Official Blog.

Friday, July 13, 2007

LIVE from King County Superior Court: Judge refuses to block I-960 from ballot

The judge has granted the state's request to deny the plaintiffs' motion for judgment, and has signed an order for the defendant.

The court has gone into recess.

POSTSCRIPT: So that's over and done with. Before actually granting the state's motion, the judge explained the various reasons why she did not want to address the issues raised by the plaintiffs. At one point she even paused and clearly stated, "This is very limited review."

She did not address the constitutionality of the measure, noting that would, however, be appropriate for post-election review.

And while acknowledging that the scope issue was pertinent to the case, she basically sidestepped it. For example, she refused to look at the supermajority issue on the basis that a similiar requirement was approved years ago as part of Initiative 601 (and is now on the books, although the Legislature has not considered the law to be binding, and no court has considered its validity or constitutionality.)

So we didn't get the definitive ruling for or against the suit that I thought we would get from the Court. Restraint evidently weighed heavily on Judge Shaffer's consideration of the plaintiffs' request.

Futurewise and SEIU 775 could still appeal the decision to the state Supreme Court, which might come out of summer recess to hear two other unrelated cases that also pertain to the 2007 general election this November.

Were the Court to take up the case, either in addition to the others or on its own, we could still see a ruling on the merits of the argument that coverrtly amending the Constitution by initiative is outside the scope of the process.

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