I-1366 appears to be passing with 53% support, but its future remains cloudy

Although I-1366 appears to have received 53 percent of the vote, it’s far from clear that the measure will become law. The Washington Research Council has a good roundup of what’s being said, including this reminder:

Although the King County Superior Court judge ordered that the initiative go to voters, he also wrote that

. . . although the ultimate decision is obviously the Supreme Court’s, there is a substantial possibility that I-1366 will be found to be invalid for exceeding the scope of the initiative process, and that voters will be voting on a measure which will never go in to effect. Plaintiffs have alluded to additional Constitutional and other substantive challenges to I-1366 which would make it susceptible to post-election invalidation, including most prominently an alleged violation of the two subject rule.

The Spokesman-Review editorial board hopes so, and hopes it happens soon.

The best outcome is a Supreme Court ruling that I-1366 is unconstitutional.

A legal challenge is a certainty. This creative initiative tries to achieve two ends with it’s either/or proposition. That makes it subject to a challenge on the single-subject rule. And it aims to coerce the Legislature to do something voters cannot do alone: amend the constitution…

The Supreme Court should take up the inevitable challenge as soon as possible. Would it really allow revenue to be hamstrung while at the same time expecting the McCleary decision to be followed?

The Olympian editorial board is, if anything, more adamant.

In Tuesday’s election, Washington voters erred in giving approval to Initiative 1366. It’s a bad apple that needs to be thrown out by the state Supreme Court.

Not waiting for a court opinion, two state legislators are ready to propose the constitutional amendment I-1366 calls for. 

Republican state Sens. Michael Baumgartner and Doug Ericksen said in a news release Thursday that they will introduce a constitutional amendment in response to Eyman’s Initiative 1366, which was trending toward passage as results from Tuesday’s election continued to be counted.

Agree or disagree with I-1366, it would be nice to have the matter of its constitutionality resolved before lawmakers return to Olympia.