Spin Control

Gregoire gets shirt, Eyman gets pen

Initiative entrepreneur Tim Eyman is loathe to pass up an opportunity to get publicity for whatever ballot measure he's hawking, so it was no surprise he showed up Tuesday at the signing and vetoing of the last bills from the late, great legislative session.

Gov. Chris Gregoire was signing the overall budget, but vetoing a provision that cut funding from the state's performance audits, required by one of Eyman's past crusades, I-900.

Eyman arrived with the wide array of interested folk who attend signing ceremonies for bills they supported, but didn't get to stand behind the gov for the official autographing. Colleague Rich Roesler, who covered the ceremony, said it appeared Eyman was told by staff he couldn't be in the offiical photo op but could make a presentation to Gregoire afterwards.

At the appointed time, Eyman peeled off his I-900 T-shirt and gave it to the governor as a sign of his gratitude. (His e-mail today is careful to note he had another T-shirt underneath.)

The gov was somewhat taken aback by a seemingly stripping Eyman, who folded the shirt and placed on the desk in front of her, Roesler said. No cameras were available to capture the Kodak moment on film or electrons.

As the event broke up, Eyman grabbed a signing pen from the tray. 

Question: Who got the better souvenir?

Probably Eyman. The gov's office has boxfulls of the signing pens, so they're probably cheaper than the T-shirts. He can probably find more use for the pen than she can for the shirt.

And he did get content for a new missive sent Wednesday to "our thousands of supporters throughout the state (cc'd to the media, house & senate members, and Governor)".

It's recounts the episode in generally warm terms, ending with the standard closing. That is, a plea for money for his latest cause.




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