On gas tax, Democrats may like to fail before they succeed

  • By Jerry Cornfield
  • Wednesday, June 26, 2013 4:59pm
  • Local News

Today’s defeat of a $10 billion transportation funding package in the House on a 48-42 vote is not a good sign for the majority Democrats.

Party leaders reportedly counted on as many as four Republican votes and only got one. They’ll have to figure out what happened.

It’s also obvious the coalition of businesses, labor unions and environmentalists which has agitated for a transportation package for months couldn’t deliver much. That’s got to be disappointing given this group – which includes powerful business groups and labor unions — has met regularly in the governor’s conference room to coordinate their lobbying.

But then again, it looked pretty bad in 2005 when legislators rejected an $8.5 billion package on a 53-45 vote. Eight Republicans voted for the plan, but 18 Democrats opposed it.

Former Rep. Al O’Brien was one of the ‘no’ votes. He said he did so at the request of the party leadership. “We wanted to see how many votes we would get from the Republicans. We were looking for 18. We got eight,” he told me then.

It all turned around 24 hours later and the package with its 9.5-cent gas tax hike passed on a 53-45 margin.

Today, Rep. Marko Liias, D-Edmonds, voted against the bill for the same reason as O’Brien did.

Tomorrow we’ll find out if it brings about a similar turnaround.

More in Local News

Live in Edmonds? Hate speeders?

Edmonds has $35,000 to address local residents’ concerns about speeding in their… Continue reading

Herald photos of the week

A weekly collection of The Herald’s top images by staff photographers and… Continue reading

Police looking for Lynnwood bank robber

The robber did not flash a weapon to the teller at a U.S. Bank.

Students, staff at Arlington elementary school were in lockdown

Arlington Police said all students and staff were safe but did not say why the lockdown happened.

Sirens! Flashing lights! — Move over!

We are a confident bunch on what to do when we hear… Continue reading

Marysville quits fire-department merger talks

Mayor Jon Nehring notified Arlington of the decision in a letter dated Jan. 10.

Everett marchers: ‘There’s too much to protest’ for one sign

About 150 people joined the “March to Impeach” from the waterfront to a county courthouse rally.

Front Porch

EVENTS Support for Alzheimer’s caregivers A Sno-Isle Libraries “Issues That Matter” forum… Continue reading

Legislation to limit opioid prescriptions under debate

Inslee also has requested a bill that prioritizes medication-assisted treatment for addiction.

Most Read