OLYMPIA — Republicans argue that the bill should remove the emergency clause, because immediate enactment would block any chance of referendum by voters unhappy with suspending I-960. They have an amendment to that effect.
Sen. Don Benton, R-Vancouver, “How can you say it’s an emergency when you haven’t even reached across the aisle to try to solve the problems.”
It will gut taxpayer protections without even giving voters “the time of day,” Benton said.
Democrats say that Republicans previously complained about the slow pace of the action, and that removing the emergency clause means it wouldn’t go into effect until long after the session is over. And if a referendum is filed, the supermajority wouldn’t be suspended until after the votes are counted from the November election.
Sen. Cheryl Pflug, R, notes that Democrats are only one-vote shy of a two thirds majority right now.
Republicans demanded a roll-call vote. It failed, 22-26, with all Republicans and Democrats Tim Sheldon and Chris Marr voting yes