A new national study reveals that Governor Inslee and Washington’s Democrat legislators are the worst in the country when it comes to budgeting taxpayer money.
In the past day, you might have seen on social media this very revealing map from Pew Research which reveals just how reckless, irresponsible, and selfish Governor Jay Inslee and the Democrat legislative majority have been with taxpayer money. The map displays how many days each state could survive on its “Rainy Day Funds.” This is a very important statistic as we are currently suffering through record-breaking inflation (due to liberal economic policies) and many economists are predicting a major recession. Therefore, it is important for states to have prudent reserves so future lawmakers are not forced to cut indiscriminately when tax revenue declines.
According to the research conducted by Pew, Washington is the only state which does not have enough reserve funds to last a single day. In fact, Pew says the state could only last 2% of a day (less than half an hour) on its reserves. Despite a record-breaking $15 billion in surplus revenue available this year, Governor Inslee and his Democrat colleagues decided to selfishly spend it all to pay back liberal special interests groups (especially state employee unions) that fund their campaigns. So while other states (including others controlled by Democrats) were helping low- and middle-income households with tax relief and putting money into “Rainy Day” accounts, the Democrats in Olympia thought only of their own immediate needs…giving taxpayer money to liberal special interest groups so those groups can in turn make large contributions to their re-election campaigns. (Pew Institute)
Democrat Speaker of the House Laurie Jinkins claims that when the COVID pandemic hit in early 2020, “Majority Democrats in the state House and Senate had a responsibility to do right by the people of Washington,” and that “It was our job to govern.” The longtime Democrat politician made these fictitious comments in a Tacoma News Tribune op-ed as she attempted to divert attention away from the many failings of the Democrats during the two years she has wielded the speaker’s gavel. The speaker’s comments are pure political hyperbole, for the facts show that she and her Democrat legislative colleagues completely abdicated their responsibility to govern by allowing Governor Inslee to abuse his “emergency” powers for more than 800 days (and counting). Democrat lawmakers had numerous opportunities to join Republican legislators “to do right by the people of Washington,” by demonstrating that it “was our job to govern,” through supporting meaningful emergency powers reform, and they chose not to.
The op-ed is full of examples of how the Democrats used the state’s record surplus of taxpayer dollars to fund their desire to recklessly expand the size and cost of state government. Nowhere in the article does the speaker mention that the majority Democrats failed to put any of the $15 billion surplus into a “Rainy Day” fund (see above story) or provide any type of tax break (sales, gas, property, B&O, or even removing taxes on diapers) to help low-and middle-income households who are financially suffering due to the rapid inflation caused by liberal economic policies.
The op-ed also fails to say even one word about the many failures of the Democrats during the past two years. There is no mention at all about the Democrats’ disastrous 2021 anti-police package or their failure during the 2022 session to fix the many obvious flaws in their pro-criminal legislation which prevent police officers from apprehending criminals. There is no mention of the poorly developed Long-Term Care plan and payroll tax (which Jinkins wrote before she became speaker) which Democrat legislators were forced to delay implementation until after this year’s elections due to voter outrage. There is no mention of the very unpopular, unnecessary, and unconstitutional state income tax on capital gains which the Democrats jammed through so they can open up another revenue stream to fund their expansion of government. There is no mention of the passing of expensive and ineffective energy bills which will soon increase the cost of gas even more (hurting low-income workers the hardest). Obviously, Speaker Jinkins has a different definition of “doing right” than others. (News Tribune)
Representative Tom Dent (R-Moses Lake) expressed his disappointment in Governor Inslee for vetoing his budget proviso which would have provided funding to study current causes of mental health issues. According to Representative Dent, this is critically important as we come out of two years of pandemic isolation. The governor, who has never shown concern for financial responsibility, said he vetoed the item because he did not think there was enough funding to complete the study. It is more likely the hyper-partisan Democrat governor chose to eliminate the study because it was one of the few items suggested by a Republican legislator which made it into the Democrats’ budget. (Columbia Basin Herald)
You can still register for the 2022 Cascade Conference presented by the Mainstream Republicans. The annual event will take place May 20th to 22nd at the Enzian Inn in Leavenworth. This year the featured speakers will be Stephen Hayes from The Dispatch (a very informative right-leaning news site) and Brandi Kruse with the [un]Divided podcast. To learn more about the conference and to register, please click on the links. (2022 Cascadia Conference, The Dispatch, and [un]Divided podcast)
Newly appointed King County Sheriff Patti Cole-Tindall twice referred to the sheriff’s department as a “paramilitary organization” in a recent interview on KIRO Newsradio. The appointee of King County Executive Dow Constantine said of her department, “We are a paramilitary organization. We have accountability here at the sheriff’s office, and we will hold people accountable if we learned that they are actively working against the mission and goal of this agency.” Later Cole-Tindall, who is currently serving as the Interim Sheriff, later repeated the phrase when she said, “So we, as a paramilitary organization, hold people accountable for when they don’t do the things that we are supposed to do.” Next Wednesday, Interim Sheriff Cole-Tindall will be face questions from the Metro-King County Council members during her confirmation hearings. Hopefully a councilmember will inquire about her unusual description of the department. (MyNorthwest)
The Pierce County Council approved spending $4 million to provide a $10,000 bonus to each of its sheriff’s deputies to prevent them from seeking other employment. As crime rates continue to climb since the passage of Washington State Democrats’ anti-police package in 2021, the council was concerned that a possible staffing shortage could leave the county’s residents more vulnerable to crime, as has been seen in Seattle. The money comes from the $175 million which the federal government sent as part of its coronavirus relief. (News Tribune)
As businesses and homeowners continue to flee Seattle for suburban communities, those areas are seeing a rapid increase in home values, and with it, higher property taxes. While increased property rates tend to be positive for homeowners in the long run, the increased taxes might be difficult during the short term, especially for lower-and middle-income households facing financial challenges brought on by inflation. The Sammamish Plateau has seen a 52% increase, while Kirkland, Redmond, and Woodinville have each experienced a 43% – 44.5% increase in home values. The King County Assessor will mail out his valuations next week. (Seattle Times)
The 2016 GOP candidate for governor and former Seattle Port Commissioner Bill Bryant used his volunteer experience with homeless individuals to promote a broader approach to solving the region’s homelessness crisis. While liberal politicians use the emergency to selfishly enlarge bureaucracies through building more government housing and purchasing hotels to provide shelter, Bryant suggests in a News Tribune op-ed that state and local governments should adopt programs similar to the comprehensive plan that Republican Pierce County Executive Bruce Dammeier is seeking to implement.
Bryant notes that very few of those who are homeless are in their situation due to lack of affordable housing. Bryant said that it has been his experience that most are suffering from chemical dependency and/or mental illness, and they refuse help for their problems. Bryant writes, “If we are to help these people, policymakers must answer the uncomfortable question: How do we help people who don’t think they need it?” Bryant suggests tougher “anti-camping” restrictions in urban cities and finding a compassionate way that encourages/forces those to get the help they need. (News Tribune)
The Spokane Police Department is using a two-pronged strategy to reverse the increase in crime which has occurred since legislative Democrats passed their anti-police package last year. Spokane’s downtown core has experienced a reduction of crime since the police department has increased officer visibility in the neighborhood. They have also been working with businesses and residents on making improvements to their property, such as lighting and landscape designs, which discourage possible criminal activity. Once the neighborhood returns to normal patrol levels as police move their emphasis to other locations, the property improvements continue to provide a deterrent to criminals. (KREM – TV)
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