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.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Traditional media turns out in force to hear Tim Eyman sell his 2010 do-over of I-960

Tim Eyman proved this morning that he still has the ability to command the attention of what's left of the Olympia press corps by holding a well-attended "news" conference in Secretary of State Sam Reed's office to promote the 2010 version of his recycled scheme to wreck government.

Joining Eyman were his faithful cohorts Jack Fagan and Mike Fagan (the latter just ran for Spokane City Council and, happily, lost to a great progressive, Amber Waldref) as well as right wing state Senators Pam Roach and Janea Holmquist, who want to preserve their power to unconstitutionally and undemocratically block Washington's Democratic majority from raising revenue.

Not surprisingly, the press conference ended up clocking in at thirty two minutes and forty seconds as Eyman and Company kept talking... and talking... and talking... and talking. Every well-tested Republican sound bite on taxes got used, repeatedly and thoroughly. Eyman's motley crew wasted no opportunity to disrespectfully attack the Democratic Party and its leadership, with Holmquist repeatedly referring to "my Democrat colleagues." Eyman, meanwhile, took aim at the news organization that has been most fearless in taking him on, muttering at one point: "Thank God the P-I is gone now."

(Psst... Tim... The Post-Intelligencer is still alive and kicking; its print edition may have ceased publication, but the online edition is more widely read than ever.)

Tim Eyman press conference
Most of the reporters attending stuck around to hear all thirty two minutes and forty seconds (from the time Eyman walked in the door to the moment he ended his talk show by saying, "Thanks for coming") but left without sticking around to hear Eyman's opposition speak.

The principal exceptions were KIRO TV's Essex Porter, The Seattle Times' Jim Brunner, and the Tri-City Herald's Michelle Dupler, who gave us (myself and our good friend Steve Zemke of a fair opportunity to respond.

Sadly, Steve and I were the only representatives of last year's unprecedented coalition to beat back Initiative 1033 who showed up to counter Eyman. At first we hoped we might be joined by others from the Rebuilding our Economic Future Coalition, but to our regret, it ended up that we were not just the only organized opposition present, but the only opposition, period.

It's a good thing we were in attendance, or there would have been no rebuttal at all to the Tim Eyman Half Hour, hosted by Secretary of State Sam Reed's office.

Ironically, Eyman spoke amidst a backdrop of banners celebrating Washington's progressive women, including Governor Chris Gregoire (the state's first female attorney general) and Patty Murray (its first female U.S. Senator). The banner he was directly standing under depicts Nena J. Croake (Washington's first female State Representative, elected in 1913 as a Progressive) who was a staunch advocate for the minimum wage, as well as pensions for abandoned mothers.

NPI and MajorityRules are releasing a joint statement on Eyman's new scheme following our media availability this morning; I'll review the major problems with Eyman's I-960 do-over in a subsequent post.


OpenID washingtonbus said...

Luckily, Fuse's Jim Dawson bumped into Eyman later in the day, and was able to get a little convo going with him. Checkerout:

January 12, 2010 4:25 PM  

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