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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Spin Control: Weighing candidates’, voters’ return on election investment

How much should a reasonable person spend to secure a $42,000-a-year job? A job with pretty good benefits, like a strong health care plan, generous expenses for food and lodging, and a decent pension – if you keep the bosses happy and they keep you around for a while. It’s mostly inside work, no heavy lifting, although you may have to spend time with people who disagree with you, and some who can be downright disagreeable. You have to agree to work 105 days straight, although no one ever does. There’s no clock to punch, and no one docks your pay if you don’t show up on one or even most of those days.

More men than women voted in November in Washington

Washington’s 2014 general election may go down in the books as the year of the male Republican voter. For the first time in a while – it’s not quite clear how long – more men cast ballots in Washington than women. Not just for all voters, but in every age group broken down by state elections officials.

Hundreds protest new background check law

OLYMPIA -- Hundreds of gun-rights advocates, some dressed in camouflage and some wearing Santa hats, gathered on the Capitol grounds to denounce the background-check law voters approved last month.

Spin Control: Slim majorities require focus on party discipline

OLYMPIA – The most ephemeral thing in politics might be big majorities. This should be particularly obvious to Democrats as they look to next year’s Legislature. Six years ago, Democrats approached the session with 31 of 49 seats in the Senate and 62 of 98 seats in the House. Those were nearly veto-proof majorities if they’d found the need to override any vetoes from Gov. Chris Gregoire, but considering she was a fellow Democrat, that point was mostly moot.

Gun rights activists plan I-594 protest at Capitol

OLYMPIA – Gun rights activists plan to bring their firearms to the Capitol next month to engage in civil disobedience by violating the new background check law that they despise. But there may be a flaw in the plan. What they say they’re going to do – “openly exchange guns” by handing them to someone else – isn’t against Initiative 594, according to Bob Calkins, spokesman for the Washington State Patrol, which provides law enforcement on the Capitol grounds. They won’t be arrested or cited for doing that.

Passage of Riverfront Park bond puts new ice rink on front burner

With the approval of a tax by voters in last week’s election, the future of the Riverfront Park’s Ice Palace is short. But many skaters gliding on the ice last weekend say they won’t miss the rink under the U.S. Pavilion – as long as city leaders follow through on plans to build a new outdoor rink along Spokane Falls Boulevard.

Airway Heights fire levy fails

The Airway Heights Fire Department’s proposed levy to fund emergency medical service has been rejected by voters.

Spin Control: What was the 2014 election all about?

OLYMPIA – A paragraph in the political correspondents’ code requires us to tell voters “what it all means” on the Sunday after an election. Personally, I’ve always believed that by now you’ve all figured it out for yourselves, but to break the code means I could get assigned to some less attractive duty, such as monitoring the police scanner or covering WSU football. So rather than risk packing up the furniture and calling the moving truck, here’s what we learned from the late, great, and sometimes grating, 2014 election:

Newhouse wins seat in 4th District

After the fourth day of ballot counting on Friday, it became certain that Republican Dan Newhouse would be Washington’s newest congressman. Newhouse beat fellow GOP candidate Clint Didier in Washington’s 4th Congressional District in a race that marked the first time in state history that two members of the same party appeared on the fall ballot for a U.S. House seat.

Washington lower-class-size initiative, I-1351, tips to Yes

Yes votes for the initiative to lower class sizes took the lead for the first time Thursday evening. Initiative 1351, which would require smaller class sizes and more teachers, was trailing statewide by about 12,000 votes on election night and has advanced since then. Election results posted on the Washington secretary of state’s website Thursday evening showed the measure ahead by 4,660 votes.