Tim Eyman keeps chasing his losses

Tim Eyman is that kind of betting slump, and he just needs to cash a ticket.

By Doug Parry

I like to play the horses, so I can see all the signs.

There are times when you just can’t figure it out, when every break goes against you and you just keep throwing good money after bad.

Tim Eyman is that kind of slump, and he just needs to cash a ticket.

The $30 car tab initiative he announced early this year fell flat and was last seen abandoned on a roadside near his Mukilteo home. He hasn’t had an initiative enacted into law since 2004, and that wasn’t exactly a thriller. I-900 allowed the state auditor to conduct performance audits, which is about as sexy as giving accountants access to calculators.

Since then he’s had nothing but losers, except for a few that were approved by voters and later overturned by the Legislature or declared unconstitutional by the state Supreme Court.

A good horseplayer who’s on that kind of streak would find something else to do for a while. Not Eyman. He’s doubling down.

His latest, Initiative 869, would end tolling on I-405, erase a bunch of car-tab fees and butcher funding for Link light rail’s slow march to Everett, just in case Sound Transit can persuade voters this fall.

In our latest poll at HeraldNet.com, we asked whether you’d support the initiative. Things are looking pretty good for Eyman, with 55 percent in our poll voting in favor, 38 percent against, and 7 percent undecided.

If you need a winner, there’s no easier target than nuisance taxes, and it’s pretty easy to jump out of the gate with ballot titles that essentially say “Taxes: Good or Bad?”

But when we get to the homestretch, odds are that voters will see the fine print and decide I-869 is illogical, or that courts will decide it’s unconstitutional. Then Eyman can go back and do it all again.

The expression “beating a dead horse” comes to mind.

— Doug Parry, parryracer@gmail.com; @parryracer

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