Seattle Times: Guest columnist James N. Gregory urges state lawmakers to stop being afraid of Eyman and the voters, exercise some leadership and reform our tax system:
Tim Eyman may be finished. His Initiative 1033 proposal to freeze government spending was not only rejected by voters, it was crushed by a 15-percent margin. And he lost not only in Puget Sound, but also in most counties in Eastern Washington, counties that supported his previous tax-cutting initiatives.
There are reasons to think that this may be the end of line for Eyman. Major economic crises often provoke major political turns. If the past is any guide, voters are now becoming pragmatic. They know that the priority has to be jobs and basic social services, and that the anti-government campaigns that have dominated politics for the past generation have to be rejected. There is nothing like a major illness to inspire faith in doctors; a lasting economic crisis tends to do the same for faith in government.
Elected officials may want to think about this. If things follow the pattern of the Great Depression, next year’s elections are going to continue to deliver the message voters just sent to Eyman. | More
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