While policymakers debate the government’s budget, the Brookings Institute, a private nonprofit research organization, decided to host their own brainstorming session. They asked experts from all different fields to submit ideas for responsible deficit reduction.
One expert, Harvard professor Joseph Aldy, drafted a proposal eliminating oil and gas tax subsidies. A move Aldy estimates would save the US government $41 billion over 10 years.
House Budget Committee Chairman Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., holds a copy of his budget plan during a news conference last week. On Thursday, the Republican-controlled House narrowly passed the measure. The Senate is not expected to follow suit.
In Washington state people convicted of crimes are required to surrender their firearms to law enforcement officials. But people with restraining orders against them – even in cases where there are serious threats of domestic violence – almost never have to give up their guns. Ross Reynolds talks with Kirkland Democrat Roger Goodman about his proposal to change that.
Originally published on Tue March 19, 2013 4:11 pm
OLYMPIA, Wash. – Predicting marijuana usage rates in Washington might come down to a test Cheech and Chong would appreciate: the size of the joint. So says one of the state’s new pot legalization consultants.
There’s a classic Cheech and Chong scene where they smoke a massive joint while driving down the road. Cheech says “Looks like a quarter pounder, man.”
Originally published on Wed March 20, 2013 10:57 am
BREWSTER, Wash. - There's one word that politicians almost always use when they talk about the U.S. immigration system. That word is “broken.” But what does that really mean? Residents of the small town of Brewster, Wash., know. For decades, immigrants have come from Mexico, often illegally, to work the surrounding apple and cherry orchards. Bewster, it turns out, is a microcosm of how the immigration debate is playing out.
When it comes to immigration, people from all over the political spectrum seem to agree on one thing: the system is broken. Now, support for immigration reform is growing among an unexpected group. Religious conservatives in Washington state, as well as all around the country, are coming out in support of immigration reform.
Seattle schoolteacher Sandra Aguila became a US citizen through the last major immigration reform bill, which President Ronald Reagan signed in 1986. Aguila had arrived in the US one year earlier at age 25. She spoke almost no English. “I could only say ‘good morning,’” she laughs.
Dane Corrida works as a hotel manager for a luxury cruise line based in Seattle. He owns a house on Capitol Hill, but since he spends most of his time working on the boats, he rents it out. If he has a couple of weeks off here and there, he can usually charm a friend or two into letting him couch surf.
Originally published on Fri March 22, 2013 3:13 pm
OLYMPIA, Wash. – Booth Gardner, Washington’s 19th governor, has died at age 76. Gardner’s family says he passed away Friday night from complications of Parkinson's disease. Gardner had lived with the illness for more than a decade.
Democrat Booth Gardner took office in January of 1985. He was a Harvard-educated businessman with a playful manner. Longtime newspaper columnist Joel Connelly offers these snapshot memories.
Ten years ago, a US-led invasion brushed aside Iraq's army and toppled the country’s long-time leader, Saddam Hussein. The swift military operation quickly became a difficult and complicated occupation. The US found itself fighting an insurgency, and a sectarian conflict nearly consumed the country.