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.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Dunmire "tapped out", Eyman borrowing money to finance initiative drive

We have always wondered if there would come a point when Tim Eyman's money spigot would ever turn off - and it appears that it's just happened.

Eyman has just announced to his supporters and the press that he's been forced to take out a loan so that he can continue to pay the mercenaries at Roy Ruffino's Citizen Solutions to collect signatures for his 2008 initiative drive.
To: Amie Bennett, Hawthorne & Company
From: Tim Eyman, I-985 co-sponsor

RE: I-985's campaign report for April

As you can see in the email below, I'm securing a $250,000 line of credit from US Bank. As soon as it's up and running, I'll be borrowing that full amount and loaning it to the I-985 campaign (Jack & Mike Fagan both offered to help but it's much simpler this way).

As of March 31, we've raised $279,000 from supporters -- that's from 765 individual donations. We'll get more donations from everyone from now until July 3rd, the end of the signature drive. But the people who are being compensated to collect signatures are turning in an absolute avalanche of voter signatures right now. They have people blanketing the state and voters are literally lining up to sign petitions -- the initiative is very, very popular.

[Note: Tim Eyman says this about his initiatives every year, including the ones that have failed to qualify for the ballot, like I-807 in 2003, or I-864 in 2004. Both were "wildly popular". It's difficult to tell whether he's being truthful or not.]

So we've gotta have the funds now and this is the only way I know of to ensure we can pay the bills. Our regular supporters are certainly donating but during these tough economic times, it's really difficult for everyone. As you can see in our reports, Mike Dunmire has been contributing a lot but he recently emailed me -- because of charitable donations and other business obligations, we can't count on anything more from him in the foreseeable future.

Based on cost projections, we need an additional $290,000 so this $250,000 loan is critical to ensuring the success of I-985.

Please make sure that April's report for I-985 includes a $250,000 pledge from Tim Eyman for this upcoming loan. Let me know if there's anything more you need from me.

Regards, Tim Eyman
Well, well, well.

This development just proves what we've been saying for years. Tim Eyman has no grassroots base. If he did, he'd have enough volunteers to collect signatures and enough small donations to pay for-hire petitioners to gather whatever else is needed. Eyman's overdependence on Dunmire for funds is finally a weakness.

And he's unwilling to terminate the effort to buy his nuisance transportation initiative (that won't solve any problems) onto the ballot. He's in a quandary.

These days, a signature drive with almost one hundred percent of signatures bought and paid for requires about half a million dollars. Since Eyman doesn't have any volunteer army, he has to have money. Lots of it.

So he's secured a $250,000 line of credit - and he's going to borrow it all. What did he put up as collateral to get that loan? Answer: His house. Of course, most families don't have any assets beside their home that would be worth $250,000.

He's taken out a second mortgage on it, according to the e-mail that he sent to US Bank, which he copied in his message to his supporters, along with this plea:

At the end of his e-mail, Eyman says to his supporters:
I'm jumping off a big cliff -- please help catch me. As you can imagine, this is scary stuff -- but failure is simply not an option. This $250,000 loan will ensure I-985's success. PLEASE help retire this debt ASAP...
It's true that Eyman's year to year haul from his personal compensation fund has been pretty good (much of it has come from Dunmire), but he obviously doesn't have a big savings account, or he wouldn't need this loan.

We'll continue to have our eye on the Initiative 985 signature drive. It will be very interesting to see if Eyman can raise the money needed to pay back this loan.

What a shame - Michael Dunmire can't give him any more gold!


Blogger Robby said...

I've heard about Tim Eyman's latest initiative. It is utterly redundant, filled with silly stopgap ideas that won't work. We already have public roadside assistance and synchronized traffic lights. Keeping cars moving is fine, but I-985 doesn't address the cause of congestion, which is SPRAWL. The best way to stop traffic jams is to build rail transit and place a moratorium on new subdivisions way out in the east hills, i.e. Sammammish or Issaquah.

April 30, 2008 4:01 PM  
Blogger Allen said...

Tim is the only one that has done anything to help tax payers get their voices heard. The red light cam is a money grab by individual cities to spend on pork barrel projects that 90+% of the population does not benefit from. The ONLY way to help congestion it to BUILD NEW ROADS not to raise taxes and waste it on more studies and blue prints of light rail system that will help 10% of the populace. What’s redundant is government repeatedly ignoring the wishes of the voters. Government works for us but you liberals all think the other way around you have your SUV and big house but you’re telling everyone else no they can’t have one. The reality is this, people are tired of the government raising taxes and accomplishing nothing with them. We have allowed many tax increases in the name of transportation with absolutely no results (we have one of the highest gas taxes in the country). If the people weren’t feed up with government waste then Tim’s initiatives would not keep winning ( I’m sure the government will sue the taxpayers over this initiative as well because they seem to think they know what’s better for us than ourselves).

May 2, 2008 8:55 AM  

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