Editorials

Now’s time to stand and be counted

YAY: FILING WEEK

Today (May 11) marks the start of in-person filling for candidates running for public office this fall in Washington. Filing ends Friday at 4 p.m.

The off-year election cycle features just one legislative race, in Federal Way, and no statewide contests. But locally, there are two seats up at Port of Olympia, the mayoral jobs in Olympia and Tenino, numerous South Sound city council and school board seats, and a Superior Court seat held by appointed Judge Mary Sue Wilson.

If you often dislike your ballot choices, this is the time to put up or shut up.

BOO: BOEING JOB SHIFT

Oklahoma City got our Seattle SuperSonics basketball franchise a few years back. Now the grabby city has managed to lure away about 900 Boeing defense-sector engineering jobs from the Northwest with a $6.6 million tax incentive.

After Washington lawmakers granted Boeing a tax break two years ago that is worth about $8.7 billion through 2040, there was an expectation in some circles that the aerospace giant would stop shipping jobs to other states. Not so.

The Legislature should take another look at House Bill 2147, which ties aerospace tax breaks more directly to jobs.

YAY: DIGITAL ARCHIVES

The Washington state Digital Archives passed another milestone recently. The archive added its 150 millionth public record in a facility that opened in 2004 on the Eastern Washington University campus.

It’s amazing — and a bit worrisome — to consider just how much information our state’s governmental activities have generated. The milestone document was a property-related record from King County.

BOO: THWARTED REFORM

In a move made just before the end of the regular legislative session, a campaign-finance reform bill was quietly killed in the Senate. The Senate had passed a nearly identical bill on a unanimous vote earlier in the year, but GOP-majority leaders kept Senate Bill 5153 bottled up in the Rules Committee after powerful groups, including the Associated General Contractors of Washington, objected.

The measure requires more disclosure by groups that spend money in state campaigns but don’t publicly identify the source.

YAY: PATTY MURRAY

Washington’s senior U.S. senator, Patty Murray, helped break a recent logjam over a human trafficking bill that had abortion language that stirred her fellow Democrats’ angst. That vote in turn freed the chamber to confirm Attorney General Loretta Lynch. Murray is becoming a synonym for getting things done.

Two years ago she crafted a bipartisan budget deal with the House; last month she crafted a bipartisan plan with GOP Sen. Lamar Alexander to reform the No Child Left Behind Act.

BOO: DEFLATED TOM BRADY

Now we know. Equipment staff for the New England Patriots did cheat by deflating footballs in their AFC title game, giving quarterback Tom Brady a better grip on the ball in a win that sent him to the Super Bowl against the Seattle Seahawks this year.

“Deflategate” didn’t change the outcome of the Super Bowl, where the cheating Patriots beat our beloved Seattle Seahawks.

But an investigation by the NFL concluded it was “more probable than not” that the Pats’ staff broke the rules, and Brady wasn’t truthful about what he knew. So much for Brady’s Teflon image.

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