NPI's Cascadia Advocate

Offering commentary and analysis from Washington, Oregon, and Idaho, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's unconventional perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Wednesday, November 6th, 2013

The failure of I‑517 could be Tim Eyman’s biggest electoral defeat, percentage-wise

Ear­li­er today, I sug­gest­ed that King Coun­ty’s vote against Tim Eyman’s Ini­tia­tive 517 might soon cross the sev­en­ty per­cent thresh­old. And sure enough, this after­noon, it did… more quick­ly than I had expect­ed it to.

The trend statewide is not much dif­fer­ent. As of late last night, I‑517 was being reject­ed, 60.03% to 39.97%. As of 10 PM tonight, the no vote has increased to 61.07%. That’s an increase of more than a full per­cent­age point.

The record for the high­est no vote against a Tim Eyman ini­tia­tive was set in 2004, when 61.55% of Wash­ing­to­ni­ans vot­ed to reject Eyman’s scheme to blan­ket the state with video lot­tery ter­mi­nals (also called elec­tron­ic slot machines) in casi­nos, restau­rants, and oth­er estab­lish­ments out­side of trib­al reser­va­tions, using the tax rev­enue to low­er prop­er­ty tax­es with­out fur­ther cut­ting pub­lic services.

It looks like this might be the year when the record set by the NO on I‑892 cam­paign is sur­passed. If the cur­rent trend con­tin­ues, by the end of the day tomor­row, the vote against I‑517 statewide should be high­est vote ever (per­cent­age-wise) against a Tim Eyman initiative.

Aside from I‑892 and I‑517, the two oth­er biggest defeats of Tim Eyman ini­tia­tives at the bal­lot came in 2008 and 2009, when I‑985 and I‑1033 were reject­ed statewide by 59% and 57%, respectively.

We’ll be watch­ing tomor­row to see if a new high water mark is set statewide. In the mean­time, con­grat­u­la­tions to the vot­ers of King Coun­ty for increas­ing the NO vote here in the heart of Wash­ing­ton to more than sev­en­ty per­cent. It’s so grat­i­fy­ing to see a Tim Eyman ini­tia­tive get­ting the big no vote it deserves.

Ini­tia­tive 517 — King Coun­ty (As of 8:21 PM)
Yes: 29.55% (92,899 votes)
No: 70.45% (221,488 votes)

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