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Election Town Hall: Mike Lewis, Jason Rantz debate the impact of I-976 on the 2020 election

In this week’s Election Town Hall, hosted by Ursula Reutin on KIRO Radio’s Facebook page, KTTH’s Jason Rantz and KIRO Radio’s Mike Lewis discuss the state Supreme Court’s ruling against I-976, the $30 car tab initiative.

The question is whether last week’s decision will play a role in the November election.

“Instead of taking ownership of this, we get a bizarre press release from Bob Ferguson saying he’s proud of the efforts from his crew, but it was Tim Eyman‘s fault,” Rantz pointed out.

He added that he hopes the ruling reminds people that elections have consequences, and the politicians you vote for can have a real impact on your life.

“It’s not going to have any effect, whatsoever,” Lewis argued. “This issue is not going to tilt a bunch of people who may somewhat tangentially link certain office holders to this particular initiative.”

Lewis acknowledges that people are upset about the decision, but it won’t impact the election.

Rantz countered that it’s up to Matt Larkin, candidate for Attorney General, to educate voters on the office Attorney General Bob Ferguson’s influence in the evolution of the I-976 decision.

Lewis said the issue will likely be huge in 2021, but he doesn’t understand why anyone would support Tim Eyman’s involvement, calling him “the master of the flawed initiative.”

Both Lewis and Rantz don’t think Loren Culp will gain enough votes to win the governor’s race. Gov. Inslee is favored to win a third term as governor, but Rantz joked that it is 2020 — a year full of surprises.

While Lewis and Rantz both agree Inslee will likely win, they’re split on Referendum 90.

“The Republicans are not saying ‘No sex-ed,’ they’re saying it needs to be age appropriate,” Rantz explained about Referendum 90, which he hopes is rejected. “They (Democrats in the Legislature) rushed this through. They didn’t have to. They could have listened to the people. They chose not to and they put themselves in this position.”

Lewis said he’s in favor of R-90, but thinks Rantz has raised valid points.

“My understanding is that the curriculum is not set. There are ideas about the curriculum, different possibilities about the curriculum, but that it’s not locked down,” Lewis said. “To the extent that a school district can modify the curriculum, I think that is still available under R-90, so I’m in favor. I do think it should be taught in every school.”

Rantz believes it should be an opt-in situation to ensure more communication between schools and parents, but Ursula pointed out that proponents argue the new curriculum is aimed at helping those students who don’t get much support at home.

Lewis, who doesn’t have children, joked that he’s 55 years old and he’s still waiting for the talk. He heavily depended on the playground talk at his Catholic school for sex-ed.

You can watch the full discussion between Jason, Mike, and Ursula above, and make sure to like KIRO Radio’s Facebook page. Stay tuned for the next edition in our series of weekly election town halls ahead of Election Day, Nov. 3.

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