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Battle of the Daves: ‘Dirtiest’ campaign in Western Washington?

State Representative Dave Hayes. (Washington State House Republicans)

Washington State Representative Dave Hayes has run campaigns in the past to maintain his position in the House. But the current campaign climate is something he has never seen before.

“This has certainly been the dirtiest campaign that I have had yet, quite frankly” Hayes told KTTH Radio’s Jason Rantz. “I have always enjoyed having fact-based, policy-based debates with my opponents in the past. The nasty hit-pieces that are coming out from my opponent and his supporters are, frankly, staining the process in my mind.”

Hayes represents Washington’s 10th Legislative District, which covers parts of Snohomish and Island Counties — Whidbey Island, Stanwood, and Oak Harbor. His opponent is Democrat Dave Paul. Hayes says the “hit pieces” are coming via mail, TV, and other media and are twisting the facts.

“They are all based on extreme environmentalists’ viewpoints and taking into question the bills I’ve voted on, whether it be environmental stuff or issues regarding what they call women’s health issues and stuff like that,” Hayes said. “And they always extrapolate these issues out to half-truths and misdirection.”

For example, there was one bill that Hayes voted on that involved state funds to clean up toxic chemicals in the environment. Hayes argues that politicians pilfered from the toxic cleanup account for years, lessening the funds going into it. Then the Democrats wanted to raise taxes to “backfill” it.

“One of the hit pieces is specific to that, saying that I voted against toxic cleanups,” Hayes said. “But that is not the case at all. I voted against their raiding of that account, and a tax increase to backfill it. I say let’s leave the account alone and let’s spend the money on what it was originally intended for.”

One issue, however, that Paul can’t touch Hayes on, he says, is education. He argues that he was a part of the success of the McCleary solution, doubling investment in education.

“I’ve also been a champion of what not to do — things that our Legislature continues to do to our school districts,” Hayes said. “Forcing these unfunded mandates down the throats of local school districts, making them spend their local dollars on these state mandates.”

The Republican further argues that the Legislature isn’t finished with the affects of the McCleary solution — how they state is fully funding education. He says that Democrats aim to establish new taxes under the excuse of education, etc. — such as a capital gains tax, or more.

“They don’t necessarily like the property tax viewpoint, because they want a capital gains income tax so bad,” Hayes said. “My opponent has endorsed capital gains income tax, which we all know is a (step toward) a state income tax down the road. I believe that to be unconstitutional.”

“I think what is going on with the Progressives in our state is that at every turn they are looking to increase the costs to justify their tax increases,” he said. “If you look at the legislation that passes down in the Legislature, and you look at the affects in our communities, the cost of everything is going up. That’s because we’ve been under one-party control in Washington state for over a generation.”

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