Yesterday we wrote of the governor’s controversial veto of key elements of the Legislature’s “grand bargain” linking climate change legislation with future transportation funding. The vetoes prompted legislative leadership – Democrats and Republicans – to charge that the governor had overreached his authority.
The Seattle Times editorial board weighs in today.
With long-sought climate change bills finally on Gov. Jay Inslee’s desk, he whipped out his veto pen Monday and deleted provisions essential to legislative approval. The action trashed a sensible bargain lawmakers struck to pass the climate bills while upping pressure for long-range upgrades for bridges, transit, ferries and roads — infrastructure Inslee claims to support.
Inslee’s decision to shred that shrewd legislative construct diminishes lawmakers’ political motivation to pass a transportation package. It also eviscerates the faith his fellow Democrats had that the governor supported the deal-making that built a coalition to pass his environmental bills.
It also bolsters the charges that this governor has made a habit of overreach.
There’s more. the editorial concludes,
the best hope for the state’s much needed transportation package is for the courts to invalidate one or both of Inslee’s vetoes. That would keep intact the incentive for lawmakers to advance the transportation package in special session. Lawmakers need to get this deal done, with — or without — leadership from a governor who claims to be “fully committed” but acts otherwise.
We’ll see. More to come, no doubt.