This Throw Back Thursday, SHIFT is taking a look into how Jay Inslee’s string of stunning failures during his first term as governor adds pressure to compensate by building a massive war chest in preparation of 2016.
Under state law, legislators and statewide officials—including the governor—cannot engage in political fundraising within 30 days of a legislative session. So, tomorrow, a fundraising freeze will go into effect. The prospect of the looming freeze placed Inslee into frantic fundraising mode, as displayed by his many fundraising appeals in the past few weeks.
Your support today will help build the momentum we need to move forward on our priorities and help my team stay focused on the critical work at hand.
If we don’t raise enough money in these three days to make up for the next four months, the opposition will know. And all that time, they could raise money to unleash a tidal wave of outrageous attacks against me — just like they did in 2014, when I wasn’t even on the ballot.
Never mind the fact that Inslee did place his policies (and therefore himself) on the 2014 ballot, the reason Inslee gives behind his need to raise money isn’t exactly truthful. It doesn’t matter how much money Inslee raises, opposition to his extreme political agenda will still exist. Inslee does not seriously expect, for example, to forcefully implement his fuel mandate via executive order without opposition—after all, 90% of Washington voters oppose him forcing a fuel mandate by unilateral action.
The truth is that the “outrageous attacks” against Inslee are not all that outrageous. Inslee has no accomplishments to stand on—his record thus far is one of bypassing the legislative process (or threatening to), catering to his top campaign donors and breaking campaign promises. Here are a couple of examples:
- Inslee has a proven record of bypassing the legislative process to get his way. Last year, Inslee signed a pact with California, Oregon and British Columbia to enact a low carbon fuel standard, without any consultation with the Legislature. In May, appearing on the Seattle Channel’s “Civic Cocktail” program, Inslee admitted that it he will “likely” implement a carbon tax without legislative approval. Our green governor made his distain for the legislative process still more clear when, appearing on KCTS 9’s Ask the Governor, he hinted that he would pursue his extreme green agenda even though there are “not have enough legislators who, from an ideological stand-point, are willing to help [me] on that.”
- Inslee knows the budget strains facing our state—the Legislature must, during the 2015 legislative cycle, fix the mess created by Democrats who have controlled the budget for 30 years and fully fund K-12 education as ruled by the State Supreme Court in the McCleary decision. Inslee knows that, at current spending levels, our state cannot afford to meet budget demands and increase non-essential spending. But, that didn’t stop him from agreeing to state employee pay hikes that will cost taxpayers an additional $585 million. After all, state employee unions backed Inslee’s gubernatorial bid with million dollar contributions. And,as has become clear, Inslee always watches out of his campaign donors—even as the expense of children and working families.
- While on the campaign trail, Inslee promised time and time again that he would not raise taxes if elected governor. During one gubernatorial debate, Inslee promised that he would “veto anything that heads the wrong direction and the wrong direction is new taxes in the state of Washington.” Well, our green governor is now singing a very different tune. As SHIFT reported, Inslee’s budget director admitted that he would “likely” propose $1 billion in new taxes when he submits his 2015-17 budget proposal next week.
Given his poor record, is it any wonder Inslee feels the need to compensate by building up his war chest?