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September 17, 2013 at 6:26 PM
So the Washington State Patrol and the Tacoma Police Department think it is OK for our elected representatives to speed anywhere in the state during their session, plus 15 days prior? [“Around the Northwest: OK for legislators to speed at times,” NW Monday, Sept. 16.]
Wow, talk about above the law! The police say it is fine for legislators to speed because they may miss a vote. How about some logic here: what votes are taken 15 days before the session?
Is it OK for them to text while driving faster than the speed limit, if they are writing to their aides? Does this disgusting fringe benefit only apply if they are headed in the direction of the Capitol?
If a lawmaker is speeding, do the police run a check on the license plate before pulling him over to see if the car is registered to one of the high-and-mighty? If so, does the officer let him carry on or at least stop him and ask him to slow down?
How many of our elected officials have taken advantage of this nonsense?
I would like to thank all the police departments who disagree with the Washington State Patrol and Tacoma Police Department.
Chris Fleck, Edmonds
July 26, 2013 at 7:04 AM
System needs to change
I am the citizen who filed that complaint with the Legislative Ethics Board. [“State ethics probe may revamp rules on gifts to legislators,” page one, July 23.]
I submitted the complaint out of frustration when I learned some of our state legislators were being well-fed by lobbyists. Meanwhile, other legislators were voting against bills that would adequately fund feeding programs to assist our most vulnerable citizens.
Sens. Doug Ericksen and Mark Schoesler questioned my motivation behind the complaint, as only Republicans are mentioned. My complaint reads: “I am unsure of whom I want you to focus on … the big picture would be the Washington State Legislature as a whole and possibly the companies and lobbyists that are doing the pampering.”
I don’t see a need to fine or punish these legislators. As my complaint states, “this system has been around for a long time and it needs to change.”
I was encouraged by the supportive statements of both Rep. Jamie Petersen and Sen. Mark Schoesler. Erickson and Schoesler both “defended their meals as opportunities to see constituents they couldn’t see during the workday.”
I say, keep having those meetings with constituents; however, at the end of the meetings and meals, everyone should pick up their own meal tab. After all, there is no such thing as a free lunch.
Richard Hodgin, Seattle
July 25, 2013 at 7:06 AM
Investigate campaign contributions
The state ethics panel is barking up the wrong tree. [“Ethics probe may revamp rules on gifts to legislators,” page one, July 23.]
Why are they investigating the influence of a few thousand dollars’ worth of lunches on our legislators, and at the same time ignoring millions of dollars in campaign contributions and their effect on legislation?
George Hoke, Bellevue
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