Former state AG calls labor group’s proposed Amazon lawsuit ‘ludicrous’

May 10, 2018, 3:26 PM | Updated: 5:06 pm
executive order, rob mckenna, working washington...
Rob McKenna was the Washington state Attorney General from 2005-13, and was a Republican gubernatorial candidate in 2012. (AP)
LISTEN: Former state AG Rob McKenna on Working Washington's desire to prosecute Amazon

The labor rights group Working Washington compares the Amazon response to Seattle’s proposed head tax to the behavior of a mob boss.

They want to see a lawsuit as a result, but do the accusations have any merit? Former state Attorney General Rob McKenna says absolutely not.

“This is ludicrous,” McKenna told KTTH Radio’s Jason Rantz. “This is so irresponsible. I haven’t seen anything like it since Councilmember [Kshama] Sawant accused two police officers involved in a shooting of murder.”

In a blog post, Working Washington cites RCW 9A.76.180, the part of Washington state code outlawing the use of threats to intimidate public servants. They say Amazon’s decision to halt new construction while they wait for the outcome of the head tax vote violates this statute. They encourage current state Attorney General Bob Ferguson to prosecute Amazon over it.

“They’re relying on the last bullet point under that definition of threat which includes an intent ‘to do any other act which is intended to harm substantially the person threatened or another with respect to his or her health, safety, business, financial condition, or personal relationships,'” McKenna said.

That definition doesn’t apply in this case, McKenna explained.

“First of all, the statute is clearly aimed at threats directed at individual public servants,” McKenna said. “Not at general statements expressing concern over the city’s policies.”

Working Washington is also encouraging their supporters to sign letters to Attorney General Ferguson in an attempt to motivate him to take action. McKenna pointed out there’s an irony to the situation, in that it’s actually possible to accuse Working Washington of extortion for making an accusation they know is untrue.

“I think it’s clearly unethical and hypocritical,” McKenna said. “Which is to say, even if it’s not a crime, it’s wrong to misuse the criminal code to accuse the company for political ends.”

Jason Rantz on AM 770 KTTH
  • listen to jason rantzTune in to AM 770 KTTH weekdays at 3-6pm toThe Jason Rantz Show.

Jason Rantz Show

Jason Rantz

Car Shot Seattle...
Jason Rantz

Rantz: Man nearly murdered in random Seattle drive-by while celebrating job promotion

My 25-year-old coworker had just finished hitting a bucket of golf balls at a North Seattle golf range. Moments later, his elation turned to terror as a man tried to murder him.
4 days ago
Bellingham Sex Shop...
Jason Rantz

Rantz: School Board director hosts ‘Queer Youth Open Mic’ at sex shop

Unless Jenn Mason clears out the store, those children will be near sex toys, graphic books, and lingerie, with a curtained doorway keeping them away.
5 days ago
King County Courthouse from City Hall (flickr creative commons)...
Jason Rantz

Rantz: Seattle judge slapped in the face, but refused to report assault to police

The unidentified suspect allegedly slapped a King County Superior Court Judge in the face, but the judge didn't want to be identified as a victim.
6 days ago
(Seattle Police Department)...
Jason Rantz

Rantz: Victim died as medics waited for critically understaffed Seattle Police to arrive to scene

Due to critically low staffing, Seattle Police were unable to quickly respond to a deadly hit and run as medics waited to be cleared to treat the victim.
7 days ago
Police officers block a street as city crews dismantle the Capitol Hill Organized Protest (CHOP) ar...
Jason Rantz

Rantz: Did Seattle councilmembers abuse police help, while defunding department?

I didn't come up empty-handed because I have no idea whether or not it's true. In this case, I was stopped from doing a part of my job.
11 days ago
Slides from Kirkland Middle School's Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Presentation  from April 28...
Jason Rantz

Rantz: School used unsubstantiated hate speech claim to push kids into equity training

KiMS principal alleged there was an "an increase in use of racial and identity slurs." The incidents were "pervasive rather than an isolated incident."
12 days ago

Sponsored Articles


Anacortes – A Must Visit Summertime Destination

While Anacortes is certainly on the way to the San Juan Islands (SJI), it is not just a destination to get to the ferry… Anacortes is a destination in and of itself!

Ready for your 2022 Alaskan Adventure with Celebrity Cruises?

Celebrity Cruises SPONSORED — A round-trip Alaska cruise from Seattle is an amazing treat for you and a loved one. Not only are you able to see and explore some of the most incredible and visually appealing natural sights on the planet, but you’re also able to relax and re-energize while aboard a luxury cruise […]

Compassion International Is Determined to ‘Fill’ a Unique Type of Football ‘Stadium’

Compassion International SPONSORED — During this fall’s football season—and as the pandemic continues to impact the entire globe—one organization has been urging caring individuals to help it “fill” a unique type of “stadium” in order to make a lasting difference in the lives of many. Compassion International’s distinctive Fill the Stadium (FtS, fillthestadium.com) initiative provides […]

What are the Strongest, Greenest, Best Windows?

Lake Washington Windows & Doors SPONSORED — Fiberglass windows are an excellent choice for window replacement due to their fundamental strength and durability. There is no other type of window that lasts as long as fiberglass; so why go with anything else? Fiberglass windows are 8x stronger than vinyl, lower maintenance than wood, more thermally […]

COVID Vaccine is a Game-Changer for Keeping our Kids Healthy

Snohomish Health District SPONSORED — Cheers to the parents and guardians who keep their kids safe and healthy. The dad who cooks a meal with something green in it, even though he’s tired and drive-thru burgers were tempting. The mom who calms down the little one who loudly and resolutely does NOT want to brush […]
Experience Anacortes

Coastal Christmas Celebration Week in Anacortes

With minimal travel time required and every activity under the sun, Anacortes is the perfect vacation spot for all ages.
Former state AG calls labor group’s proposed Amazon lawsuit ‘ludicrous’