Are you as tired of election drama as I am? It almost seems like reality television, wallowing in its recent success, (or failure as most viewers see it) has defined a new level of drama and it
revolves around American politics. At the national level, the debate is
between political parties, Democrat and Republican, with Al Gore and George
Bush each sending their supporters to fight for the party line. Never mind that
ballots have been cast and the election is over. Hey, lets keep counting until
the outcome serves a specific party.
At the state level the battle is between Maria Cantwell and Slade Gorton.
It appears that Gorton is the leader at this point, but beyond the actual vote
count is the overriding question of why it was so close. After years in politics, why
is it that Gorton can only grab about half the votes? Shouldn’t his track record
be enough to assure success? Maybe there are those that think he has been
in politics too long and it’s time for a change. Or another possibility is that
newly created technology wealth bought a good chunk of the election for
Cantwell. Just a note to political candidates who are spending big bucks, our open rate
is $9 a column inch and we would be happy to place a full-page
advertisement for you.
In the district races for the state legislature, our district once again
went Republican. But the difference this time is that we have an actual Valley
resident going to Olympia as our representative. I don’t believe that we have
had someone from the Valley as a representative since Frances North. I’m sure
if I’m wrong, someone will let me know.
But the political drama doesn’t stop there. In a rare move reminiscent
of George Bush Sr.’s famous quote “Read my lips … no new taxes,” the
North Bend City Council, during a work study, decided to do residents a favor
and only ask for a 2 percent increase in taxes rather than the full 6 percent
authorized. The discussion was held in the spirit of Initiative 722, which limits
property tax gains to 2 percent annually. It’s a great gesture by the City
Council, but there also seems to be some political maneuvering. What would
sound better as a campaign sales pitch than “I voted for the lowest tax increase
in recent memory — 2 percent — to honor the wishes of the voters,” Am I
the only one that thinks that this kind of move is posturing for a potential
mayoral bid. Could it be that Ed Carlson, Mark Solitto or Fred Rappin might want
the mayor position when it next comes up for election?
The North Bend City Council is just now beginning to see the impacts
of new residential developments such as Forster Woods and the Si View area.
But just as important to the political process as new blood, is some
congruency and knowledge of city history, but that discussion is an editorial in itself,
and Snoqualmie will soon be grappling with the same situation.
Let’s all hope things in the political arena are settled soon so we can
focus on things that are really important: winter sports, school and family.