Good evening from Seattle!
Nearly all the counties that have reported election results so far show a fairly lopsided outcome on Costco’s Initiative 1183, which aims to deregulate and privatize the state’s liquor system.
As of 8:50 PM, the yes vote stood at 59.74%, while the no vote stood at 40.26%.
The results look fairly decisive. At this point, it’s safe to say that Costco has just successfully purchased an election, thanks to a hefty $22.5 million plus war chest.
At present, I‑1183 is only failing in Asotin, Cowlitz, Garfield, and Wahkiakum counties, which are all fairly rural. Protect Our Communities’ message appears to have resonated there, but unfortunately it hasn’t resonated anywhere else.
Whether I‑1183 actually becomes part of the Revised Code of Washington is another matter. The initiative, which isn’t very well written, may end up being challenged in court prior to the first week in December, when initiatives go into effect.