Several listeners have asked me to post my endorsements for next Tuesday's election. Since we all know the world would be a much better place if everyone thought like me, here is the official Monson ballot.
I-985 - Reduce traffic congestion
This is a no-brainer. It opens up the HOV lanes to all vehicles during non-peak hours, and mandates that money collected from red-light cameras would have to go toward reducing traffic congestion - things like synchronizing traffic lights.
It also would redirect the money that is now spent on public art in transportation projects to congestion relief - this part of the initiative was inspired by our show.
I-1000 - Assisted suicide
This one is very difficult for me. I watched both of my parents die after long, agonizing battles with horrible diseases - cancer and alzheimer's. I fully support any individual's right to control their body and their life. Any moral or religious objection that I may personally have with suicide is ultimately between that person and God.
The concern that I have with this initiative is that the suicide involves other people and must therefore be endorsed by us - the citizens of this state. A physician and pharmacist have to write and fill the lethal prescription. It would, however, be self-administered by the terminally-ill patient.
I do fear that some terminal patients will be pressured by family - or feel the pressure themselves - to relieve their loved ones of the "burden". With all of my misgivings, I voted "no". When I am as conflicted as I've been on this matter, I erred on the side of life. I certainly understand those who vote "yes" on this initiative. It's the most morally challenging measure in this election.
I-1029 - State certification of home care workers
The less government, the better
President of the United States
Bob Barr - Libertarian
I said I would vote for McCain if he had a shot here in Washington. He does not. So, if I'm going to throw my vote away, I'm going to throw it away on the candidate who would reduce the size of our federal government. Who opposed the bailout. Who understands the importance of freedom and liberty and how they are disappearing in America. Plus, Barr came on my show twice in the last couple months - McCain and Obama did not.
Christine Gregoire has increased state spending 33% in the last four years. If she had "only" increased that spending 20%, our state budget would be balanced. Instead, she has spent us into a $3.2-billion deficit. Our one-party state is out of control. That, combined with our regional transportation mess that has only gotten worse under her watch makes this a very easy vote for me.
This is a ridiculous office that should be abolished.
Secretary of State
A democrat who has done a great job as a watchdog of wild spending by government officials.
A very smart, dedicated public servant
King County Charter Amendment #7
An outrageous attempt to dramatically limit the ability of citizens to exercise their constitutional right to the initiative process.
Prop 1 - Sound Transit
One of the most out-of-control public agencies in the country is back with the most expensive tax proposal in our state's history. The average couple will pay $650 a year for this measure. Sound Transit is years behind schedule, billions of dollars over budget. We could start solving our region's transportation mess immediately at a fraction of the cost if we focus on buses and vanpools. This monster must die.
If I lived in Seattle - which I do not:
Prop 1 - Pike Place Market levy
There is no reason a thriving retail center should need and be subsidized to the tune of $73-million. It's a horribly mismanaged city endeavor. That mismanagement should not be rewarded with a cash infusion from a property tax hike.
Prop 2 - Parks levy
Parks should be a priority that are funded out of the general fund. Property taxes are already way too high. They never ask for special levies for unpopular projects. I'm tired of government officials playing this game of holding us hostage for the things we care about the most. Please stop rewarding this sleazy tactic.
I do not have strong opinions on the other races. You're on your own on the rest. I'm not going to fill-in and mail my ballot until this weekend - so feel free to try to change my mind in the comments. I would love to get your comments on these or any races I did not list. Let's make this thread the definitive open marketplace of ideas for the next few days as people shape their decisions.