Earlier this year I described how Washington state senator Dan Swecker was trying to give a state subsidy to the private anti-equality activities of Gary Randall and Larry Stickney:
The Crumbling Coalition of Fanatical Fringe knows that they’re unlikely to gather enough signatures to get a referendum on the ballot. If they didn’t, Sen. Swecker wouldn’t have tried to give them a state subsidy by pushing Amendment 32, which would have required that the new DP law go directly to a voter referendum. What do I mean by state subsidy? Well, as Ken Hutcherson and Joseph Backholm have already explained, getting enough signatures this year would be even more difficult and expensive than previously. This is because the number of valid signatures required to get a referendum on the ballot is 4% of voter turnout at the last major election, and turnout was huge for the presidential election…Swecker’s amendment would have relieved them of the costs, work and gamble of playing Referendum Roulette with other peoples’ money. And, of course, the embarrassment yet again failing to get enough signatures.
When Gary Randall mentioned the other day that Swecker is still deeply involved with the referendum to repeal Washington’s incremental domestic partnership law (Ref. 71), I realized that I had yet to determine whether this subsidy thing was a habit of his. Indeed it is.
Looking at the 2006 bill that added sexual orientation and gender identity/expression to the state’s anti-discrimination laws (HB 2661), as well as the domestic partnership bills of 2007 (SB 5336), 2008 (HB 3104) and 2009 (SB 5688), I found that Swecker proposed five (5) of his own amendments and supported two (2) amendments proposed by others to subsidize the private anti-equality industry by trying to insert an automatic referendum clause into the bill.
Here are the details, bill by bill:
At every opportunity, when a pro-equality bill came before a committee he was in (and showed up for) or on the senate floor, Swecker either pitched his own amendment to subsidize the private anti-equality industry, or voted in favor of one pitched by a colleague. In every instance, these amendments FAILED. Not only does Senator Dan Swecker have a habit of trying to give state subsidies to the private anti-equality industry, but he has a perfect record of FAILURE in doing so.
I thought that republicans opposed welfare as a rule. Well, all I can say is, after watching Gary Randall pay himself a fat paycheck from donor funds and Larry Stickney bungle, well, just about everything, I guess I can’t blame Swecker for trying to rig a little public largess for his buddies. Seems a bit of a conflict of interest though, seeing as Swecker is both campaign manager and board officer for Gary’s Faith & Freedom PAC.
Cross-posted at Washblog.