Conservative lobbyists tell caucus what to do--Until recently a "third rail" for politicians, civil liberties have been put on the fast track by the 2009 session of the Washington State Legislature.
Our lawmakers have enacted everything-but-marriage legislation to expand rights of same sex couples. They've extended hate crimes laws to protect the trans-gendered. They're restoring voting rights to felons who have paid their price to society.
At the same time, alas, lawmakers have put students, seniors, teachers, homeowners -- and the cause of social justice -- on a slow boat to nowhere.
A final note: I was on a panel Monday night up at Horizon House, the big First Hill retirement facility. About 160 people were in the audience. It was a savvy group. They understood, in a New York minute, the case for reforming a tax structure that is unjust and inadequate.
Why do we see such lithe retirees, and such listless legislators? Why are seniors willing to face the future while senators and representatives balk at talk of increasing revenue?
Friday, April 24, 2009
Joel Connelly: Olympia's disappointing Democrats
Joel Connelly (Seattle PI):