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Eye On Olympia


Ballot measure promoter Tim Eyman says that he’ll file an initiative and a referendum this morning related to House Bill 2661, the recently-passed bill banning discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.

Based on Eyman’s preliminary info e-mailed to reporters, the measures look like a second cousin to his Initiative 914, which would have targeted, among other things, race-based admissions policies at colleges (as well as hiring practices at public and private employers). Eyman has already said — scroll down — that 914 was just a trial balloon.

According to Eyman, his new, as-yet-unnumbered referendum would ban the state from from requiring any school, church, employer “or other public or private entity to impose quotas, set-asides, or other preferential treatment to any individual or group based on sexual orientation or sexual preference.” Naming gays, lesbians or others as a protected class, he said, comprises such preferential treatment.

Eyman has nicknamed the measures “Let the Voters Decide.”

Gov. Chris Gregoire — yes, we’re following the Associated Press’ lead now and using her preferred shortened version of Christine — said this morning that she’ll oppose any such measure.

“It’s just unbelievable to me that we would now turn our backs and say it’s OK to discriminate,” she said. “That, to me, is wrong.”

Text of both measures should be available on this blog shortly…

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Richard Roesler covers Washington state news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Olympia.

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