Hey Capitol Barbies,
Welcome to week one of the 2024 Legislative Session! Nothing says Barbie Dreamhouse like those grand marble steps and our Community Whip Count & Tally in hand. But looming in the background are 6 far-right initiatives bankrolled by megamillionaire Brian Heywood threatening to roll back our progress and turn our state into a Mojo-Dojo-Casa-House of nightmarish inequality.
The Tally started as a way for us to connect our people to the legislature—specifically, the bills that most affect our working-class communities. During session, we’ll send weekly updates, news, and actions you can take with links and everything so all you have to do is just click (we know you’re busy so we’re trying to make it easy for you!).
A few quick things before we get into 🐐 Our Top Ten 🐐
- Why is everything moving so fast? This year we’re in for a “short” session which means bills will be moving fast or not at all. Our state functions on a biennium: a two-year budget window that all bill’s lifecycles follow. This two-year cycle—a short 60-day period in even years and long 105-day period in odd years—means bills introduced but weren’t passed last year “roll over” into this year and pick back up where they were in their respective legislative process. But they have to do it quickly.
- Washington > Michigan – Before we get into that, let’s virtually pour one out for our dear University of Washington Huskies following yesterday’s championship game against the University of Michigan. The bad news is the Huskies lost the game, but the good news is that Washington beats Michigan in plenty other ways including a higher literacy rate and life expectancy at birth, more abortion clinics, lower unemployment rate, and better hikes, beer, and wine (okay maybe those last three are more opinion than fact but we’re still counting them). Sorry dawgs, but go Washington!
- When Florida is in first place, does it really count? Thanks to the capital gains tax (our first legislative priority back in 2021🥺) and the Working Families Tax Credit, Washington no longer has the most regressive tax code in the nation! Now, we’re in SECOND place for being ✨ the worst ✨. While progress is good news, and if you took action with us back in 2021 you genuinely should be celebrating this, people with low incomes still pay three times higher effective tax rates than the ultra-wealthy, and we don’t jive with that. Time to look at those Top Ten bills and see what we can do to lead the nation in progressive tax policy.
Remember: short session is not an excuse to avoid doing the right thing.
What do you think? Have any questions? Tweet us your thoughts @WACommAlliance.
Keep up on the action and opportunities to get involved through our legislative newsletter, The Tally.