This evening, we are pleased to announce that one of our state’s brightest and hardest-working lawmakers will be the opening speaker at our 2014 Spring Fundraising Gala on April 25th: State Representative Chris Reykdal.
Since his election to the Washington State House of Representatives in 2010, Chris has served his constituents in the 22nd District — and all Washingtonians — with honor and distinction. He has been a principled and consistent voice for tax reform, for the rights of working men and women, and for underrepresented constituencies with no lobbyist and no voice in our state’s capital.
Last autumn, when Governor Jay Inslee called a special session for the purpose of rapidly enacting big tax breaks to placate Boeing (which was threatening to locate production of the 777X somewhere else if it didn’t get what it wanted), Chris stood up for working families and called for stronger, tougher legislation. When he judged the final bill to be a basket of goodies for Boeing instead of a true set of economic incentives for the company and its hardworking employees, he voted no.
And in the wake of the vote, he wasn’t afraid to loudly criticize Boeing in public, either, saying what Inslee and most other lawmakers wouldn’t: that Boeing’s threat to abandon Puget Sound and build the 777X elsewhere amounted to extortion.
This year, Chris took on another challenge: initiative reform, which has long been one of NPI’s key legislative priorities.
As the prime sponsor of HB 2552, Chris led the effort to persuade House leadership to place legislation to strengthen the initiative process against fraud and abuse on the House floor for a vote. Thanks to Chris’ leadership, on February 17th, the House overwhelmingly passed a strong initiative reform bill for the first time in modern history. The bipartisan vote was seventy-one to twenty-six.
The bill unfortunately died in the Senate at the hands of Tim Eyman’s friends Pam Roach and Don Benton, but HB 2552’s passage in the House remains a huge accomplishment, one that has been giving Tim Eyman heartburn for weeks. (Eyman is reflexively opposed to any legislation that would reform the initiative process).
If you asked us to find someone who exemplified bold progressive leadership at the state level, Chris Reykdal would be at the top of our list. He’s smart, he’s courageous, and he’s authentically pragmatic. We are proud of the work he’s done on behalf of all Washingtonians in our state Legislature, and we are simply delighted to have him as the opening speaker at our 2014 Spring Fundraising Gala.
If you haven’t yet bought your ticket yet, we urge you to do so now using one of these links. A household ticket admits all the members of an immediate family and is a good value if you plan to attend with your spouse or children. (The gala is a family-friendly event and young people of all ages are welcome!)
Admits one person
Admits a family
Here’s what else you can expect at our 2014 Spring Fundraising Gala:
- A full dinner buffet with vegetarian and vegan choices
- Beer and wine selections from our cash bar
- Opportunities to mingle with fellow activists and elected leaders
- A chance to win a scrumptious dessert for your table at our second annual Dessert Dash, organized by our Host Committee
- A family-friendly atmosphere
If you’d like to RSVP for the gala on Facebook, you can do so here.
Students who want to volunteer to help put on the event can get in the door free. If you’re interested in volunteering, please get in touch with us.
In the weeks to come, we’ll be sharing more details about our 2014 gala, including the names of our other speakers. We hope you’ll help us make our biggest event of the year a success by buying your ticket and committing to attend.
See you on April 25th!