Everything that the Washington State Legislature tried to prevent in limiting campaign contributions to judicial candidates in Washington State has come to naught. The Building Industry Association of Washington (BIAW) and its cronies are laughing at Washington’s State Legislators.
One could very well ask them, Do you have no shame?
They are literally trying to bully their self anointed candidates onto the Washington State Supreme Court by steamrolling over their opponents with their voter contact and media saturation campaign. They are literally trying to cram their candidates down our throats. I guess they don’t trust the voters to be able to make reasoned decisions on their own.
Washington voters should be outraged at this holier than thou money controls all challenge to fair elections by the BIAW. Doesn’t it make you wonder why they think they have to spend so much money to convince voters to vote for their candidates?
Latest figures show money being raised for BIAW candidate John Groen and for opposing Chief Justice Gerry Alexander now tops $1.7 million. The latest up to date figures posted by www.VotingforJudges.org shows that the BIAW has spent almost a million dollars in their effort. Adding their $141,829 unreported C-6 expenditures for Walking for Washington to their other $807,993 cash and in-kind expenditures brings their current effort to $949,717.
The Washington State Legislature was right to fear the BIAW was trying to buy Supreme Court Justices. But they really misjudged that the BIAW would listen to the message and restrain their efforts to pack the Supreme Court with developer friendly judges. The Washington State Legislature needs to come back next year and amend the campaign laws to limit contributions to PAC’s. Other states already do this.
The issue is not one of limiting spending which the US Supreme Court has frowned on. The issue is one of reasonably limiting special interests from overwhelming the media, mail and other efforts to reach voters such that they drown out the voices of anyone else who wants to have a say in the election. We have a one person/one vote system everyone agrees to.
We need a one person/one contribution amount for all campaign contributions whether directly to the candidates own campaign committee or indirectly through a so called independent expenditure. The limit needs to be the same whether you give directly to the candidate or indirectly to some so called independent PAC also trying to influence the outcome of the election.
If you don’t limit also limit individual contributions to PAC’s then limits to candidate committees make no sense. The law says the BIAW could only give $1400 directly to Groen. But they are spending a million dollars to help elect him. Unlimited contributions to PAC’s now drown out the voice of the candidate.
The almost million dollars spent by the BIAW to try to anoint a former lawyer to the BIAW is obscene. It drowns out other peoples voices. Hopefully Washington voters will realize what is going on and reject the BIAW’s attempt to take over the Washington State Supreme Court for the own narrow interests. I urge people to vote for Gerry Alexander and spread the word to others. The final chance to vote is this Tuesday Sept.19 if you are not voting absentee. This race will be decided Tuesday.