Former state Rep. John Ahern was
famous for floor speeches trotting out the specter of unhappy
Washington businesses decamping en masse for Idaho.
“That great sucking sound you hear,” he'd warn, as Democrats rolled their eyes, “is business heading for Idaho.”
Ahern's now gone, ousted by a Democratic challenger in November. Yet the issue clearly isn't.
“Democrat bills send clear message to employers: Go to Idaho!” said a recent press release from Sen. Janea Holmquist, R-Moses Lake. She blasted several bills that she said would “rip the welcome mat away from our employers.”
Hogwash, say Democrats.
“I think Wa state is clearly very competitive when it comes to biz climate,” said Senate Majority Leader Lisa Brown, D-Spokane, citing studies that gave the state high marks. Part of being competitive, she said, is having a well-trained, well-educated workforce.
also said Washington lawmakers are trying to help, such as by cutting
unemployment insurance taxes by hundreds of millions of dollars over
the next few years.
“I think it's kind of ironic that in a down economy, when we actually have a lot to be proud of in this state, that some legislators are kind of going around sounding a lot of negativity,” said Brown.
UPDATE: Good God. Rep. Joe Schmick just used Ahern's old line again in a floor speech. It never ends.