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.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Big insurance companies belatedly dumping money into BIAW's Initiative 1082

It took them some time to get on board, but a bevy of big insurance companies has finally begun pumping money into the Building Industry Association of Washigton's initiative to destroy our publicly administered industrial insurance system, which protects workers who get injured on the job.

Liberty Mutual, to date the BIAW's main partner, recently tossed another $200,000 into the Initiative 1082 coffers, bringing its aggregate total to half a million dollars. That's nearly as much as the BIAW itself put in.

Meanwhile, The Hartford Financial and Farmers Services LLC (the latter a a Zurich subsidiary) have pumped in $150,000 and $125,000, respectively. They are now the third and fourth largest contributors to the measure.

Other insurance companies that have gotten involved include Seabright Insurance and Alaska National Insurance Company. Each has contributed $50,000.

And two industry trade groups — the Property Casualty Insurers Association of America and the Independent Insurance Agents & Brokers of America — have put up nearly a combined $120,000.

The following chart — from, NPI's newest project — visually depicts all of the contributions I just mentioned. This is actually a snapshot of an interactive chart that we've been updating it as more industry money flows in. To see the most up-to-date version, check out's Visual Analysis page.

Contributions to I-1082, as of September 29th, 2010

The BIAW's I-1082 fund now has close to a million dollars available to spend with just a couple of weeks left until ballots drop.

Fortunately, the broad coalition fighting I-1082 hasn't waited to spring into action. It has already launched its third television ad, called "There for me".

The ad features firefighter Brian Hurley, who explains that our publicly-run system took good care of him after he was injured in the line of duty.

But, as he says, our publicly-run system is now under attack by insurance giants, who shamelessly want to make money off of injured workers. Our publicly-run system was designed to take care of people, not make money, so it doesn't delay and deny claims like private insurers in other states.

NPI joins with Brian and thousands of other working men and women in urging Washingtonians to stop insurance industry greed and vote NO on Initiative 1082.


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