Democrat State Senator Steve Hobbs was considered what passes for a moderate in the Democrat caucus before he nabbed the job of his dreams. Thanks to Democrat Governor Jay Inslee appointing him as Kim Wyman’s replacement as Secretary of State, ex-Senator Hobbs is finally living the dream. on a substantial government salary, helping pad his legislative pension, even better Cadillac-level medical coverage, and a big corner office the in the capitol.
All that, just for simply bowing to Inslee’s’ will and leaving the state senate.
Inslee (and far-Left allies like Democrat State Representative Joe Fitzgibbon) couldn’t be happier with the move, which removed the biggest legislative thorn from the progressive Democrats’ sides. The loudest critic of Inslee’s expensive environmental proposals is now out of the way.
Hobbs, as the chair of the Senate Transportation Committee, often didn’t agree with Inslee’s partisan approach to transportation and environmental issues, blocking much of Inslee’s nutty legislation. Back in May 2021, Inslee controversially vetoed (and got sued by Democrat legislators AGAIN) over a deal that Hobbs had crafted to connect transportation funding to greenhouse gas reduction goals. That made Inslee even more excited about moving Hobbs along, and with Wyman’s resignation (and no law requiring Inslee honor the voters’ preference by selecting a Republican), he found a way to get the job done.
Secretary Hobbs has been replaced as leader of the Transportation Committee by another leftist Inslee environmental acolyte, Democrat Senator Marko Liias, whose qualifications include more bankruptcies on his resume than the majority of Americans. Sen. Liias is more than happy to make it more expensive and harder to drive a car so that he can join his boss Inslee in claiming that will save a few hundred fish.
Rep. Fitzgibbon, the leader of the House’s far-Left environmental wing, is salivating at the improved prospects in the Senate, and can’t contain his excitement about what might be coming down the pipe. “With Hobbs out of the Senate, that opens up possibilities we didn’t have in the past,” Rep. Fitzgibbon said in a recent Crosscut article. He must be thinking about jamming through one of Inslee’s most irrational legacy budget items, a $100 million per year subsidy for rich people to buy luxury electric cars, a policy which would not have made it out of a Hobbs-led transportation committee in previous years.
Now with Liias at the helm, legislators are likely to start pushing even more of Inslee’s hair-brained environment
schemes. Democrat House Transportation Chair Jake Fey appears to have little interest in stopping bad legislation and will just go along since he has little influence compared to previous House Transportation leaders like Representative Judy Clibborn.
Let’s recap some of the more outrageous Inslee environmental “ideas” for improving our state:
-How about a per mileage fee on cars (tracked by GPS so the state knows where you are at any time of the day).
-Taxes on carbon emissions (Inslee’s program is already in such a mess that an incentive program is being proposed).
-Decarbonization of gas (read more tax dollars for the state) which will harm most of the commercial turbo engine vehicles in the state and reduce miles per gallon efficiency.
-Ridiculously expensive methane collection facilities to replace the cheap and abundant natural gas we have in Washington.
-Conversion of perfectly good and operational car ferries to expensive and unproven hybrid “green” technology ones;
-and, Sen. Liias’s favorite waste of taxpayer dollars, expansion of Sound Transit’s access to state funding for its little-used and over-budget trains.
Perhaps if Inslee was serious about reducing greenhouse gases, he would be focused on getting traffic moving to reduce the amount of time everyone spends on congested roads wasting gas.
In the meantime, unfortunately for Washington residents, Inslee may get his environmental way this legislative session.