I guess its time for another Eyman Initiative 1033 grassroots joke. In two separate comment threads over on Crosscut on Initiative 1033 Tim Eyman makes the following statement:
“out of 48,148 supporters who were mailed a I-1033 petition in February, an extraordinary 34,588 sent back a partially filled or fully filled petitions”
Over at the Northwest Progressive Institute Advocate, Andrew reported that:
“The Secretary of State’s office tells NPI that they received 19,317 petitions, not all of which are full. Eyman claimed to have submitted 314,277 signatures. “
So what happened to the remaining 15,271 petitions from his grassroots supporters? Did Eyman lose the extra petitions? Or is it again just another example of Eyman trying to falsely hype what is really a dismal grassroots effort? Didn’t Eyman get into trouble for something like this before? I think it was about not being paid when he was because he thought it sounded better to say he was working for free even when he wasn’t.
I’m sure Eyman’s not in any legal trouble on this, it’s just another one of many times that he is fast and lose with facts and figures, trying to put a spin on something to say what he thinks people want to hear or what he thinks sounds better for his self image. In this he is trying to convince people what a tremendous grassroots effort this campaign is when in reality it was mostly a paid signature gathering effort funded over 86.5% by 3 individuals.
I suspect the truth is that he sent out 48,148 petitions and only received back 34,588 signatures. That means that out of the final 315,444 signature count, the rest were probably from paid signature gatherers.
34,588/315,444 = 10.96% of signatures turned in from mailing to “grassroots”
Could it be true that only 11% of Eyman’s signatures were from the “grassroots” supporters?
Maybe as many as 1700 petitions came back if all were full. This seems like a much more realistic return rate based on Initiative campaigns I’ve been involved with.
Money wise it also seems accurate. 315,444 signatures total – 34,588 from grassroots leaves 280,856 he paid for. He spent $598,081 to get his signatures, including mailing, which is about $1.89 per signature for the total amount. This is in the ballpark for cost per signature in campaigns these days.
While we’re at it we should actually note that Eyman did not collect 315,444 valid signatures. A small point but I am tired of Eyman’s misrepresentations of fact. He had a 12% invalid rate which means that only 277,591 signatures were declared as valid. A minor point but lets keep our figures straight for the record.