OLYMPIA—Some of the problems with the original bill suspending the supermajority required for tax increases have been removed, Sen. Joe Zarelli, R-Ridgefield, said.
That doesn’t necessarily mean any Republicans will vote for it, he said.
Democrats defended the suspension.
“This is a significant issue. We do not take lightly, changing or even suspending the will of the people,” Sen. James Hargrove, D-Hoquiam, said. The first amendment to I-601 was suspended by Sen. Bob Morton, a Republican. Republican Sens. Jim West and Dino Rossi also suspended initiatives, some of them by bigger margins than I-960, Hargrove said.
“It’s disengeniuous to suggest that one side of the aisle always upholds the will of the people and the other side does not,” he said.
The drop in the budget is worse than the drop in the early 1980s, when the state extended the sales tax onto food purchases, he added, and “I don’t intend to do that.”
“In all our districts we see homes foreclosed and businesses closed. It wasn’t state government that got us there. It was waste, fraud and greed on the part of corporate America,” Sen. Ed Murray, D-Seattle said.
Republicans talk about the big majorities in their districts that voted in favor of I-960, but his district voted heavily against it, Murray said. The state has a republican form of government that sends legislators to do the work of the government.