I’m suing Bob Ferguson on Fri @ 9 am – he wrote a biased ballot title for a liberal initiative – I’m asking judge to write a neutral description
Democrat Attorney General Bob Ferguson has politicized the ballot title process for initiatives unlike all his predecessors
For decades, professionals in the AG’s office have written official ballot titles for initiatives that were neutral and unbiased regardless of the political topic of the measure. But under Ferguson, liberal initiatives get a thumb on the scale in favor and conservative initiatives get a thumb on the scale against.
Heroic and iconic professionals like then Assistant Solicitor General James Pharris must be rolling over in their graves with what’s happened to the AG’s office under Ferguson.
This Friday @ 9 am in Judge Christine Schaller’s courtroom, I’m going to do my best to highlight this disparity. I’m doing pro se litigation — meaning I’m the lawyer — challenging the AG’s proposed description for an initiative.
The case at hand is a liberal initiative — I-1000. It is the “bring back affirmative action” initiative that explicitly seeks to overturn I-200 which was the first statewide initiative I ever co-sponsored (sponsors’ website read: REVERSE TIM EYMAN’S I-200). Thanks to the 58% of voters who approved it in 1998, for the past 20 years, I-200 has prohibited state and local governments from discriminating against, or granting preferential treatment to, any individual or group based on race, sex, color, ethnicity or national origin in public employment, public education, or public contracting. It didn’t and doesn’t affect the private sector, only government. It didn’t and hasn’t abolished “affirmative action”, only those government practices that step over the line and discriminate and give preferential treatment based on the immutable characteristics listed in the 1964 civil rights act.
Here’s how the AG’s describes it: “Initiative Measure No. 1000 concerns remedying discrimination and affirmative action.”
Really? Remedying discrimination? Isn’t that the most biased thing you can imagine including in what is supposed to be a neutral description?
As I wrote in my opening brief (https://tinyurl.com/y9qr3pe3)
But Ferguson’s office responds: “The phrase comes from the measure. It cannot be true that using a phrase directly from the measure puts a ‘thumb on the scale’.” They repeat that claim later: “Using the phrase directly from the measure neither creates bias, nor is it inaccurate.”
From my brief: “Imagine Petitioner (Eyman) sponsoring an initiative to reset vehicle license tab fees back down to $30 per year. And throughout the language of the initiative’s text, Petitioner included the term ‘remedying overtaxation’ alongside the policy change of $30 tabs. There is simply no way that the Attorney General or this Court would include such a term in the Statement of Subject (Initiative Measure No. ### concerns remedying overtaxation by reducing annual vehicle license fees to $30). It wouldn’t be done because it would be absurd exactly as absurd as including the term ‘remedying discrimination’ in the Statement of Subject for Initiative Measure No. 1000. It is self-serving, biased phrase and should be stricken.”
I-1000 is a liberal initiative. Bob Ferguson is a flaming liberal and so he supports it. So the official description favors it. And the argument he makes it that they’re just using the language from the initiative cannot create bias.
But there’s also a conservative initiative on the ballot this year: Initiative 1634. The initiative begins: AN ACT Relating to the taxation of groceries.
What’s the Statement of Subject for this conservative initiative?
Initiative Measure No. 1634 concerns taxation of certain items intended for human consumption.
The word “groceries” appears nowhere in it. Why?
Liberals challenged the initiative and told the court that including the word “groceries” would create bias in favor of the initiative. Initiative sponsors responded that the word “groceries” appears throughout the initiative. Ferguson sided with the liberal Petitioners. “The Attorney General agrees that the statement of subject proposed by Petitioners is an improvement over the current wording … the Attorney General supports a statement of subject of, “This measure concerns taxation of certain items intended for human consumption.”
So using the language in the initiative is OK when it’s a liberal initiative but biased when it’s a conservative initiative.
When activist Glen Morgan demonstrably proved that liberal Initiative 1631 imposed a carbon tax, the AG wrote a description calling it a fee.
There are example after example after example of Ferguson’s corruption of the process. Liberal initiatives are regularly assigned biased ballot titles to elicit a yes vote, while conservative initiatives are getting biased descriptions sabotaging them.
Ferguson rewards his big-monied liberal backers and undercuts any initiative sponsored by his enemies.
Let’s hope that on Friday Judge Christine Schaller calls B.S. on Ferguson’s thumb on the scale in favor of I-1000. Again, I’m handling the legal challenge pro se meaning I’m the attorney (even though I’m not one — I have a business degree from WSU).
I’ll let you know how it turns out.
We still got a ways to go to get enough signatures for the $30 Tabs Initiative. I know IF EVERYONE DOES THEIR PART with donations and signatures we can make it.
Top 5 Contributors: Suzanne Burke, Puget Sound Chapter NECA PAC, Andrew Skotdal, Tim Eyman, Thomas O’Brien