Last week the Spokane City Council decided to ignore reality – and the U.S. Constitution’s Commerce Clause – and voted to put on the November ballot an initiative that would fine railroad companies for shipping oil and uncovered coal through Spokane.
Over the weekend, the city’s Spokesman-Review pointed out the folly of the Council’s actions, writing, “It becomes a game of Whack-An-Oil-Train that Spokane loses, throwing away money for attorneys in the process. And every time a bad initiative passes, and judges relying on the Constitution blow the whistle, voter cynicism increases.”
The paper also asks the Council reconsider its vote, pointing out in its headline that “The Spokane City Council is tilting at Windmills”. However, since it’s not their own money paying for lawyers in this already-lost cause, why should these politicians care – after all, there is symbolism at stake!