Vote for Initiative 2117 and fight WA Dems extreme environment policies | In Focus

It’s time to bring moderation back to Washington.

What happens when you offer two state Democratic representatives from the 5th Legislative District, Bill Ramos and Lisa Callan, the chance to respond to a query about the high costs of the Climate Commitment Act on natural gas prices?

The answer is: nothing.

Three weeks ago, I wrote my column based upon an Enumclaw City Council member’s personal opinion about the upcoming initiative 2117, which will nullify the Climate Commitment Act if it passes in November.

Here is Enumclaw Councilman Chris Gruner’s comment repeated from that previous column:

“The Climate Commitment Act affects much more than just our natural gas utility; it increases gas prices, food prices, and even the cost of electricity. The law makes compliance more expensive each year, so the impact on people’s budgets will continue to get worse by design. A clean and healthy environment is a priority for me; but imposing onerous regulations to create a government slush fund is inefficient and ineffective, and ignores the impact to hard-working families here in Washington.”

Since I have received only one comment—from Representative’s Lisa Callan’s legislative aide (who will remain nameless to protect that person from getting thrown under the bus for their bosses’ actions):

“Richard, Thanks for reaching out. The Ethics in Public Service Act (RCW 42.52) prohibits me from using state resources in the assistance, whether directly or indirectly, for the promotion or opposition to a ballot proposition/initiatives. Thank you for understanding. Take care….”

I talked with a lawyer who knows the law on these matters. His response is that the legislative aide is trying to hide behind the law to avoid answering the question. He told me I should have asked her to send me a reply from her personal email. Instead, I will quote the rest of the RCW that applies to my query:

RCW 42.17Q.555 also states that it is permissible to respond to: “A statement by an elected official in support of or in opposition to any ballot proposition at an open press conference or in response to a specific inquiry [boldface mine].” Since my question fits the second category, the aide and her boss refused to do their jobs. And, Representative Bill Ramos, by his silence, also refused to serve the public good.

Given these (lack of) responses, I’m going to give my take on Initiative 2117.

State Democrats are not acting in the public interest because they fear Governor Inslee’s wrath exactly like state and national Republicans have done because of their fear of Donald Trump’s wrath and vengeance. Both groups are afraid to confront their leaders because it may mean they lose their House seat in the case of Representative Lisa Callan, or their Senate Seat in the case of Representative Bill Ramos in the next election.

Their refusals to answer are shouts that Initiative 2117 should be voted in the affirmative by all voters who want good environmental laws that cut pollution but don’t resort to legislative and gubernatorial overreach.

The Democrats have ruled this state too long. As a Turkish proverb states: “When a fish begins to stink, it begins at the head.” Democrat Party leadership stinks in this state. Elected Democratic leaders know that they cannot cross Governor Inslee and remain in power. Inslee, with his extreme environmental views, is likely angling for a cabinet position if President Biden wins another term.

The problem is that Republicans are under the thrall and the thumb of Donald J. Trump, a convicted felon. In both the cases, neither party is providing for the general welfare. They are both infected with a political pandemic brought about a desire to get into power and stay there.

We are fortunate, in this case, that our state has the initiative process. Neither political party is serving its constituents. Caring about the truth matters. Democracy matters. Vote for Initiative 2117 in November. Vote to protect us from all the extremes on this environmental issue. Sanity lies in the middle, not on the fringes.

Enumclaw City Councilman Chris Gruner’s comment is right on. Democratic politicians know it but they’re too afraid to tell the truth. Take his advice. It’s in your best interest.