August 7th, 2019
As expected, the right wing has succeeded in forcing a vote on Washington’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Act (Initiative 1000). Adopted by the Legislature on April 28th, 2019, I-1000 would empower state agencies and institutions of higher learning to conduct outreach to disadvantaged populations and underrepresented constituencies.
After the conclusion of session, the right wing mobilized to mount a referendum campaign against Initiative 1000, using a bevy of lies to convince voters to sign their petitions. The campaign began turning in its signatures several days prior to the deadline.
“Sponsors had ninety days to collect at least 129,811 signatures of Washington registered voters. 213,268 signatures were submitted during the week leading up to the July 27th deadline,” Secretary of State Kim Wyman’s office said in a news release. “The Office of the Secretary of State verified that R-88 had been signed by enough registered voters to meet constitutional requirements to make the November ballot.”
Referendum 88 is the second right wing measure to qualify for the November 2019 ballot, following Tim Eyman’s I-976. Twelve Eyman push polls will also be on the ballot, but unlike R-88 and I-976, they are not binding.
If R-88 is approved, Initiative 1000 will remain in place and go into effect as intended by the Legislature. If I-1000 is rejected, it will be repealed.
NPI is working with business, labor, and civic groups to build a strong coalition to Approve Referendum 88 and uphold Initiative 1000 this autumn.
We believe Washington’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Act is worth defending, and we’re committed to ensuring voters have the information they need to cast an informed vote on Referendum 88 this autumn.