Politics

healthcare controversy
12:18 pm
Fri June 22, 2012

Survey: Will politics tip the scale in high court's healthcare ruling?

The U.S. Supreme Court
The Associated Press

As potentially millions of people collectively held their breath, again, Monday morning waiting for the U.S. Supreme Court to decide the fate of Obama’s health care reform, one of the many questions lingering in the air is will the justices keep their politics out of the decision? (Update: The court did not issue its ruling Monday and will likely do so on Thursday.)

And, we must also wonder: Will Americans keep their politics out of their assessments of whatever the court decides, when it does? (Warning, this is a “Take our survey” story … see below.)

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Politics
5:00 am
Thu June 21, 2012

Record turnout expected at Pride Parade; Gregoire is grand marshal

Elsie Esq. KPLU

Seattle's 38th annual Pride Parade is coming up this Sunday. The parade usually draws big crowds, but with a referendum on same-sex marriage on the November ballot, parade organizers are expecting a record turnout.

"I think we’re going to see an increase this year, especially with the marriage referendum out there," says Adam Rosencrantz, the board president of Seattle Out and Proud, the group hosting the parade. "People are going to come out and support us and show their excitement."

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Health care reform
1:43 pm
Wed June 20, 2012

Washington may attempt an individual mandate, if Supreme Court cuts it

A Supreme Court ruling on President Obama’s health care law could force Washington state lawmakers to shift gears. They want to prevent a repeat of the 1990's, when the insurance market "went over a cliff," says the state Insurance Commissioner.

That could force them to require state residents to have health insurance. But, their first choice to prevent a health-care "disaster," say Democrats, is to rely on federal subsidies to keep insurance affordable.

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NPR Elections
1:23 pm
Thu June 7, 2012

Ron Paul Says He Won't Have Enough Delegates To Win GOP Nomination

Republican presidential hopeful Ron Paul speaks in this February file photo during an event celebrating Filipino veterans at the Leatherneck Club in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Stan Honda AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Thu June 7, 2012 12:13 pm

Rep. Ron Paul, who is still technically in the hunt for the Republican presidential nomination, seems to have finally accepted his fate.

In an email sent to supporters late last night, the Texas congressman said by the time the Republican National Convention comes around, he won't have sufficient delegates to secure the nomination.

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Washington State Legislature
12:39 pm
Thu June 7, 2012

New Washington laws impact film, teachers, universities

OLYMPIA, Wash. — The film industry is getting incentives reinstated. Teachers are getting a new evaluation system. Universities are getting new rules on how to handle abuse allegations.

Dozens of new laws approved by Washington lawmakers earlier this year took effect on Thursday, though two of the most contentious proposals were not implemented as planned.

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It's All Politics
7:09 pm
Tue June 5, 2012

Live Blog: Wisconsin decides governor's fate in recall vote

Supporters of Republican Gov. Scott Walker watch returns as they await the governor's speech at an election night rally on Tuesday in Waukesha, Wis. Walker survived a recall election in the state, defeating his Democratic rival, Tom Barrett.
Brian Kersey UPI/Landov

Originally published on Wed June 6, 2012 4:40 am

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, just the third governor in U.S. history to face a recall effort, is now the first to successfully defeat such an attempt. The Associated Press projected that Walker would defeat Milwaukee's Democratic Mayor Tom Barrett in what was a rematch of the 2010 gubernatorial election.

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Election 2012
2:59 pm
Sat June 2, 2012

What's with Ron Paul's fans anyway? Romney takes 37 of Wash.'s 43 delegates

A man, in black with a Ron Paul shirt, leaves after interrupting Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., making a pitch for Mitt Romney, at the Veterans Museum & Memorial Center last month in San Diego.
The Associated Press

TACOMA, Wash. — They jeer at the idea of coalescing behind Mitt Romney. They're still scraping for every possible delegate. And they hold out hope that Ron Paul could win the presidency this year.

By just by watching Paul's loyal supporters, you'd never know that the Republican presidential contest is over.

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Washington State Legislature
1:17 pm
Wed May 30, 2012

Judge says Supermajority tax rule violates constitution

A judge has ruled the two-thirds majority initiative violates the simple majority provision of the state constitution.

Initiative 1053 was approved by Washington voters in November 2010 and has made it difficult for lawmakers to adopt tax increases since then.

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Election 2012
12:24 pm
Thu May 24, 2012

McKenna faces 2 ethics complaints over county work

A lawyer and a citizen have each filed ethics complaints against Republican gubernatorial candidate Rob McKenna.

Kyle Olive and Kimberly Christensen said Thursday they submitted concerns this week to the King County ombudsman, arguing that McKenna violated various parts of the county ethics law during his time on the King County Council.

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Seattle Arena Deal
3:20 pm
Wed May 16, 2012

Basketball arena inches toward possible return of the Sonics

Investor Chris Hansen (center) speaks during a press conference Wednesday morning announcing an agreement in the effort to build an arena that could bring professional basketball back to Seattle.
Keith Seinfeld KPLU

How would taxpayers be protected if a new basketball arena gets built in Seattle? The details are in an agreement between the city, King County and the man who wants to bring an NBA team to town.

After three months of meetings and negotiations, there’s now a formal Memorandum of Understanding between investor Chris Hansen and Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn along with County Executive Dow Constantine. In the fine print, it describes how Hansen will purchase the land south of Safeco Field, build a new basketball arena on it, and then sell it to the city.

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Politics
1:33 am
Wed May 16, 2012

Documents show agency insiders questioned Great Wolf Lodge tax exemption

"Great Wolf Lodge in southwest Washington draws families from across the region to its indoor water park."
Austin Jenkins KPLU

GRAND MOUND, Wash. - Great Wolf Resorts is a Wisconsin-based chain of indoor water parks and hotels. Four years ago, the company expanded what it calls its “paw print” to the Northwest.

It opened its first west coast property at Grand Mound, Washington south of Olympia. The state of Washington declared the resort tax exempt because Great Wolf partnered with the Chehalis Indian Tribe.

Now, Correspondent Austin Jenkins has obtained internal state documents that question that tax-free status – potentially worth tens of millions of dollars.

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Politics
8:51 am
Tue May 15, 2012

Great Wolf Lodge tax exemption stands despite internal doubts, court ruling

Families play in the wave pool at Great Wolf Lodge south Of Olympia.

Since the 1970s, U.S. policy toward American Indian tribes has been to encourage economic independence. Tribal casinos are probably the most visible symbol of that policy.

These days, tribes are diversifying into other businesses. In 2005, the Chehalis Indian tribe in southwest Washington partnered with a Wisconsin-based water park chain to build a destination resort. The state of Washington, in turn, granted the project tax exempt status. But now, internal state documents question whether Great Wolf Lodge really is a tribal entity and eligible for favorable tax treatment.

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Politics
6:00 am
Mon May 14, 2012

May Day vandalism: Whose anarchy is this?

May Day 2012 violence in Seattle
Erin Hennessey

Weeks have passed since the May Day protests, but Seattle police are still asking for help identifying the individuals who damaged property. The violence was largely attributed to people who've been called anarchists. So what is anarchy anyway?

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Politics
8:54 am
Fri May 11, 2012

Obama supporters cheer his stance on same-sex marriage during Seattle visit

Teri McClain, (r) says she's neither gay nor married, but grateful for the President's support of same-sex marriage rights. She was part of a demonstration of support outside Mr. Obama's fundraiser at the Paramount Theater in downtown Seattle.
Photo by Bellamy Pailthorp KPLU News

President Barack Obama was in Seattle yesterday on a fundraising swing. It was his first trip since the big announcement Wednesday that he now supports the right of same-sex couples to marry, a stance that was celebrated by supporters both inside and outside his speech at the Paramount theater downtown.

At 8th and Pine, a colorful band of demonstrators gathered for a rally near the barricades to say thank you to the President, even though they couldn’t afford the thousand-dollar ticket to see him speak.

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Employment
5:29 pm
Mon April 23, 2012

Gregoire signs $1B stimulus plan for Washington

OLYMPIA, Wash. — Washington Gov. Chris Gregoire has approved a $1 billion stimulus plan that seeks to get construction workers back on the job.

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