July 6th, 2018
Tim Eyman gets a gift from NPI’s Permanent Defense at his roadside press conference
Tim Eyman didn’t have petitions to submit today to qualify an initiative to the November 2018 ballot, but the lawbreaking initiative promoter decided to show up at the Secretary of State’s Elections Annex anyway in a bid to garner attention for I-976, his fourth attempt in three years to wipe out transit investments across Washington State.
Stationed in front of a pickup truck adorned with a banner and tubs of I-976 petitions, Eyman kept a steady stream of commentary coming to any reporters who would listen about the I-976 signature drive as well as the Alliance for Gun Responsibility’s I-1639, which Eyman opposes and which is likely headed to the ballot.
To signify and reaffirm our dedication to vigorously opposing and defeating I-976, we provided Eyman and his associate Mike Fagan (a Spokane City Councilmember) with a token of our commitment to protecting our vital transit investments. Each received a copy of the mini-poster below depicting Link light rail vehicles in action.
Link is our newest transit mode and is liberating an increasing number of riders from gridlock in one of our state’s most crowded, congested corridors. It is being expanded north, east, south, and west simultaneously thanks to voter approval of Sound Transit 2 in 2008 and Sound Transit 3 in 2016.
Eyman claims to have collected 202,172 signatures for I-976 so far, which for all we know could be a made up number. He needs 350,000 by January 4th, 2019.
As it so happens, almost exactly twelve years ago, Eyman appeared on that very same Olympia street in a Darth Vader costume to announce that he had collected 142,613 signatures for I-917, which, like I-976, was an attempt to slash vehicle fees. A few weeks later, Eyman returned for his turn-in event, this time dressed up as Buzz Lightyear.
Not long after, the Secretary of State revealed that an insufficient number of signatures had been submitted to allow the initiative to pass a random sample check.
A subsequent complete check of all signatures found that the initiative did not have enough to qualify. Consequently, I-917 never appeared on the ballot.
Eyman declared publicly that he had submitted enough signatures to qualify, and alleged (without foundation) that some of the I-917 petitions had been “pilfered”.
In an attempt to prop up his baseless claim, Eyman circulated a letter that purported to show the weekly signature totals for I-917. Hilariously, the total for the week of Eyman’s event in Olympia contradicted the number that Eyman had given to reporters, prompting us to ask: Was Eyman lying then, or is he lying now? (Either way, Eyman lied.)