If the election results hold (still 178,863 ballots left to count) there will be at least 58 lawmakers in Olympia next January that answered yes to this question:

“If Initiative 1185 is adopted, would you vote to allow the people of Washington to have the opportunity to vote on a state constitution amendment to require a supermajority vote in the legislature to raise taxes?”

64% of voters (passing in every county) approved I-1185 this year. This is the same margin of support that I-1053 received in 2010. The voters have now approved the supermajority for taxes requirement on five separate occasions since 1993.

Of the 109 lawmakers and candidates that answered “Yes” to our survey question, 58 will be in Olympia next session (pending a potential recount in the 17th district). 39 are in the House (66 needed) and 19 in the Senate (33 needed). This means an additional 27 Representatives and 14 Senators need to support providing the voters the opportunity to end this debate once and for all by referring the question to voters in the form of a constitutional amendment.

After the election results have been certified we will review the vote totals for I-1185 by legislative district to see which lawmakers should be inclined to allow their constituents to settle this issue.

Here are the 58 lawmakers that answered “Yes” to our survey:

House – 39
Gary Alexander (R-2)
Matt Shea (R-4)
Jay Rodne (R-5)
Chad Magendaz (R-5)
Kevin Parker (R-6)
Jeff Holy (R-6)
Shelly Short (R-7)
Joel Kretz (R-7)
Brad Klippert (R-8)
Larry Haler (R-8)
Susan Fagan (R-9)
Joe Schmick (R-9)
Norma Smith (R-10)
Dave Hayes (R-10)
Cary Condotta (R-12)
Brad Hawkins (R-12)
Judy Warnick (R-13)
Matt Manweller (R-13)
Norm Johnson (R-14)
Bruce Chandler (R-15)
David Taylor (R-15)
Maureen Walsh (R-16)
Terry Nealey (R-16)
Paul Harris (R-17)
Brandon Vick (R-18)
Liz Pike (R-18)
Ed Orcutt (R-20)
Hans Zeiger (R-25)
Jan Angel (R-26)
Steve O’Ban (R-28)
Linda Kochmar (R-30)
Cathy Dahlquist (R-31)
Christopher Hurst (D-31)
Drew MacEwen (R-35)
Dan Kristiansen (R-39)
Elizabeth Scott (R-39)
Jason Overstreet (R-42)
Vincent Buys (R-42)
Mark Hargrove (R-47)

Senate – 19
Randi Becker (R-2)
Mike Padden (R-4)
Michael Baumgartner (R-6)
Jerome Delvin (R-8)
Mark Schoesler (R-9)
Barbara Bailey (R-10)
Linda Evans Parlette (R-12)
Jim Honeyford (R-15)
Mike Hewitt (R-16)
Don Benton (R-17)**
Ann Rivers (R-18)
John Braun (R-20)
Bruce Dammeier (R-25)
Mike Carrell (R-28)
Pam Roach (R-31)
Tim Sheldon (D-35)
Kirk Pearson (R-39)
Doug Ericksen (R-42)
Rodney Tom (D-48)

As we wrote earlier this year in this Tacoma News Tribune op-ed:

“A constitutional amendment would provide the public and businesses with predictability about whether this tax protection will exist from year to year and whether or not the four-time (pending fifth) approval of the voters for this policy was a fluke or actually reflects their consistent and ongoing desire for lawmakers to build a strong public consensus on the need for any proposed tax increase.

With voters and lawmakers repeatedly enacting the supermajority vote for taxes requirement over the past 20 years, what could be more representative of the public will than allowing a vote of the people on a constitutional amendment to help end this debate once and for all?”

Whether a lawmaker supports or opposes this policy directive consistently sent by voters, at some point reality has to set in that requiring a supermajority vote for taxes or voter approval is the overwhelming will of the people.

Additional Information
Supermajority for Taxes Legislative Survey Results
(Results reflect original publication totals)
End the constant back-and-forth over supermajority for tax increases
Supermajority Vote Requirements Are a Basic Part of Washington’s Democracy
Tax restrictions across the country

Initiative 1185: To Affirm the Two-thirds Vote Requirement for Tax Increases


[Reprinted with permission from the Washington Policy Center blog]