Dear friends and neighbors,
As we approach the end of the current legislative session, I would like to provide a quick update on an important piece of legislation that was just signed into law.
I am thrilled to inform you that Gov. Inslee signed Senate Bill 5082, repealing advisory votes, into law today! I have referred to advisory votes as “waste, fraud and abuse” for many reasons. First, they use loaded language that is intentionally designed to instill distrust in government and to influence, not measure, public opinion. Second, they cost millions of dollars in administrative costs affecting nearly every stage of the election process. Third, many voters are confused by what they are and exactly what they mean. Finally, and critically, there is data showing advisory votes deter voters from completing their ballots. It’s no surprise then that Washington is the only state that had these so-called “advisory votes.”
Just the facts
My bill removes Washington state’s requirement for misleading advisory votes on revenue legislation, eliminating the ballot-cluttering remnant of an unconstitutional initiative, and replaces them with useful, accurate information about the legislature’s fiscal decisions readily available via QR code in the voter guide, coupled with an online database, adding a layer of accountability. This way people can better understand where their money is going and how it will be spent. This is far more transparent and more accurate than advisory votes, which are neither advisory nor actual votes. The QR code links to a non-partisan website that provides information about the state budget, including revenues, expenditures, and performance measures and does not promote any political agenda. The phone number for the existing legislative information center will also be in the voter guide for those without reliable internet access to receive this information.
Our ballot is sacred. It is the most important way for us to participate in our democracy. Everything on our ballot should have meaning and advisory votes violate that principal. Removing them is a significant step forward for our state’s democracy, and we must continue to advocate for meaningful and accurate information in our electoral process.
Stay in touch
Thank you to everyone who continues to reach out! I appreciate your engagement and enjoy hearing from you about the interests and concerns of our community. You can always send me an email at email@example.com or give me a call at 360-786-7694. You can also follow me on Facebook and Instagram for regular updates.
Senator, 48th Legislative District