“Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it.” - Mark Twain
By Michael Sarko
- The Capitol Hill Times -
With ballots arriving in mailboxes all around the state of Washington, the race for its next governor is in a dead heat. A poll released this past Monday found both major contenders, Democrat Jay Inslee and Republican Rob McKenna, tied at 46 percent of the projected vote, with a 4.4 percent margin of error. Inslee leads with women and more or less has a lock on the Greater Puget Sound region, but McKenna has been showing good numbers with moderates in recent weeks and has command of the eastern portion of the state. This one is likely to come down to the wire.
In the realm of ballot measures, things are a bit more complicated. I-1185, which would create the need for a 2/3 majority to raise new taxes, is polling with a slight victory, but few voters seem interested in it. Fewer than 40 percent of voters are certain about their support for the initiative and the 23 percent strongly opposed come on the heels of an anemic opposition campaign. I-1185 could go down in an upset on Election Day. The prognosis for the controversial I-1240, the ballot measure to approve charter schools in Washington, is even worse. Its support recently dipped below 50 percent and the number of “certainly yes” voters has dropped to around 30 percent.
The marijuana legalization measure, I-502, has a comfortable but not unassailable lead among both registered and likely voters. Approval has a cushion of between seven and ten points. Barring a sudden bout of reefer madness on Nov. 6, it’s likely that the Washington State Liquor Control Board will be going green by 2014.
Referendum 74, the approval of which would legalize same-sex marriage in Washington, has been difficult to parse, but a very smart poll by the UW Center for Survey Research has cleared up the fog somewhat. In a survey that accounted for discomfort with the topic of homosexuality, religiosity, and other mitigating factors, the poll finds the R-74 approval effort ahead at just south of 53 percent compared to support for rejection at 46 percent. Most importantly, R-74 has a plurality in all age groups and a lock among all but those who are 66 and older.