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UW Election Eye 2012

Campaign 2012 through the eyes of UW faculty and students

Topic: Olympia

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May 10, 2012 at 7:04 PM

[do action=”iframe” url=”http://clpmag.org/Downloads/wa-map/statewide_legislative_racemap_2012_small.html” width=”600″ height=”300″/] Click here to see a larger version [do action=”iframe” url=”http://clpmag.org/Downloads/wa-map/Puget_Sound_legislative_race_map_2012small.swf” width=”600″ height=”545″/] Click here to view in a new window Some might think of the state’s assembly as small potatoes, but it really does matter. Our state legislature’s decisions impact us in many ways, whether that’s through taxes, Washington’s education…

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Comments | More in Interactives | Topics: Infographic, interactive, map

April 28, 2012 at 8:30 AM

Are all lobbyists supervillains?

Lobbyist Steve Gano outside the Washington State Senate Chamber (Photo courtesy of Steve Gano website)

The public finds them distasteful, and politicians avoid association with them, but lobbyists play an important and often misunderstood role in politics. 

Like most things in politics, the parameters and exact definition of lobbying are murky. The profession connotes images of bloated salaries, exploitive favors and misused tax dollars. My admittedly cartoonish understanding of lobbyists were that they were the shadowy figures lurking in the hallways of the Capitol building, pining for a moment of face time with their local rep.

There are countless examples of lobbying’s more nefarious side, but it’s also worth acknowledging the watchdog role of lobbying. As Steve Gano sees it, he’s an advocate on behalf of his clients. A lawyer of the political arena.

Gano was hitchhiking home from his summer job one weekend in college, when he happened upon his future in politics. A car pulled over, offering him a ride to campus, and Gano noticed that the back of the vehicle was full of yard signs.

 

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Comments | More in State | Topics: Campaign Finance, Legislators, Lobbyists

April 22, 2012 at 8:00 AM

Democrats talk big on taxes at 46th district forum

Campaign signs

The Elks lodge in Lake City was plastered with campaign signs, both inside and out on April 19, 2012. (Photo by Alicia Halberg/UW Election Eye)

Democrats in Northeast Seattle came together Thursday for a nominating convention and candidate forum packed with 27 candidates. Increasing state revenue was the theme of the night.

SEATTLE — The doors of the Lake City Way Elks Lodge were plastered with campaign signs. As I walked in I was confronted by staffers from every campaign offering literature and stickers. There was even more, from at least 10 different candidates, waiting for me at my seat. The lodge, normally plain aside from the elk antlers at the front and back, was plastered with campaign signs.

Despite lackluster attendance at the local Democratic caucuses last Sunday, the 46th Legislative District Democrats sure didn’t disappoint on Thursday night.

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Comments | More in Economy, Local | Topics: 46th Legislative District, Cann, Crocker

February 21, 2012 at 6:30 AM

Lobbying in Olympia on Presidents Day: Sing-in with the Occupy movement and disco with the Revenue Coalition

Participants of Occupy Presidents Day raise their hands for a "sparkle ovation" on the Capitol steps, Monday, Feb. 20. Olympia saw a number of demonstrations to coincide with the holiday. (Photo by Ilona Idlis/UW Election Eye)

OLYMPIA–For many people, Presidents Day is marked by department store bargains and a chance to sleep in.  But for activist groups across the state of Washington, it was an obvious day to lobby–especially in an election season. Instead of snuggling under the covers, groups of students, teachers, union workers, and the occasional choir convened at the capitol early Monday morning in the cold drizzle.

Inside the legislative buildings was a hive of activity. The Senate and House offices buzzed with 15-minute visitations and the hallways were filled with youth in power suits prepping for their next meeting. Thanks to the crowds, the O’Brien Building elevator temporarily malfunctioned due to overcapacity.

Outside, two different rallies prepared for show time.

Occupy Presidents Day was staging their entrance a few blocks from the legislative campus at Sylvester Park. About fifty people encircled the park’s gazebo and listened to the day’s instructions. Scattered around the crowd were home-made anti-war signs, “99%” banners, a woman dressed as the Statue of Liberty, and a large sculpture of planet earth (which would be carried to the state house later).

Kaeley Pruitt-Hamm, a 22-year-old organizer for Western Washington Fellowship of Reconciliation, announced the logistics of the planned Sing-In and Die-In. The Occupiers would arrive inside the legislative building’s rotunda by 1:30 P.M., collapse “dead” on the ground, and then sing in protest of war to the tune of the national anthem. She had the crowd practice the song while a volunteer held up lyrics, handwritten on the back of protest signs.

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Comments | Topics: Occupy movement, Olympia, Presidents Day