The King County Council has approved new legislation allowing elected county officials to collect money from anyone at any time — even when contributors have business before the county.
Officials will be able to set up an office fund to pay things related to their jobs, but not part of their pay: like travel, dining, office supplies and other expenses not covered by public funds. Contributors will be able to put up to $1,000 into the office funds every four years.
Ross Reynolds talks with Erica Barnett, news editor for Seattle Met’s political blog Publicola, about what this means for King County Council’s transparency.
Same-sex couples around the Seattle area celebrated Wednesday’s historic ruling from the US Supreme Court that struck down some bans on gay marriage. The ruling spurred some couples to think about making wedding plans, now that they would receive new federal benefits. Others were inspired to apply for a marriage license, or even get married on the historic day. For many, Wednesday started out as a day of anticipation and anxiety and ended as a day of elation.
The dual victories the Supreme Court handed to gay-marriage supporters Wednesday seemed to temporarily shift the focus of the fight from Washington to the states.
For instance, one of the more notable reactions to the Supreme Court decisions overturning the Defense of Marriage Act and upholding a lower court ruling that blocked California's Proposition 8 from taking effect came from the American Civil Liberties Union.
This week, we've been airing DecodeDC's excellent interview with Log Cabin Republican founder Rich Tafel. Tafel makes the case that progress on big issues can only occur when there are parallel movements in both the Republican and Democratic parties. He says that explains why same-sex rights have advanced so rapidly lately, whereas the environmental movement has largely failed to escape its self-imposed ghetto within the Democratic party.
Tafel's uniquely post-partisan approach isn't confined to national politics. Washington state has its own chapter of the Log Cabin Republicans. Republican and former Washington Secretary of State Sam Reed says they haven't been a major force in this state. But they're doing important work in making friends with Republicans. And it's Republicans with gay and lesbian friends who are changing the Republican party.
Here are a few interviews KUOW's Joshua McNichols conducted with Troy Bodnar, vice president of Washington state's chapter of the Log Cabin Republicans:
In an interview today on The Conversation with Ross Reynolds, Nicolas said one question that remains regarding the today’s Supreme Court decision is whether legal same-sex marriages will be recognized across state borders.
The U.S. Senate wants to put a stop to Border Patrol checkpoints and warrantless searches taking place far from the border with Canada. The policy change was included in an amendment to the larger immigration overhaul being debated this week. It pleases civil liberties and immigrant advocates, but concerns frontline Border Patrol agents.
Plaintiffs in the Prop. 8 case, react on steps of the Supreme Court, June 26, 2013, after justices cleared the way for the resumption of same-sex marriage in California. From left: Jeff Zarrillo, Paul Katami, David Boies, Sandy Stier and Kris Perry.
Credit AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite
Michael Knaapen, left, and his husband John Becker, right, embrace after the Supreme Court struck down a federal provision denying benefits to legally married gay couples in front of the Supreme Court, June 26, 2013.
Credit AP Photo/Charles Dharapak
Gay rights advocate Vin Testa waves a rainbow flag in front of the Supreme Court at sun up in Washington, DC, June 26, 2013.
The Army says Joint Base Lewis-McChord's 4th Stryker Brigade will be one of 10 combat teams deactivated nationwide. The move is just one part of the Army’s plan to reduce its forces as the war in Afghanistan winds down.
The brigade has about 4,000 soldiers. Nearly 350 of them returned home Sunday after a seven-month deployment to Afghanistan. Overall, the Army plans to reduce the force by 80,000 soldiers by 2017.
The Seattle City Council voted unanimously Monday to spend $500,000 to relocate residents of the south Seattle tent city called "Nickelsville." The council has given residents of Nickelsville until September 1, 2013 to move out or be evicted.
Washington Governor Jay Inslee says a budget deal in Olympia is “imminent” – even as state workers start to receive layoff notices. At a news conference Monday afternoon, the Democrat reported significant breakthroughs in budget negotiations.
A shutdown of state government is now one week away. That’s why temporary layoff notices are going out to state employees. That’s a requirement of labor contracts. Governor Inslee says he feels “enormous frustration” there wasn’t a budget deal in time to avert the notices.
How do you get young people to vote and get involved in politics? One solution might be to host a circus-themed candidate forum at a popular music venue replete with costumes and a talent show. That's exactly what's happening at Candidate Survivor — the largest candidate forum in Seattle. It's just one effort of Washington Bus, a Seattle non-profit that works to get young people involved in politics. Toby Crittenden is the executive director. He talked with David Hyde about how to get young people involved in politics and voting.
It’s been about a month since a truck hauling an oversized load struck an I-5 bridge and sent it plunging into the Skagit River. Truckers have a tough job navigating infrastructure challenges such as obsolete bridges and increasingly congested highways. To learn more about the challenges, KUOW’s Derek Wang went to trucking school.
Failed Bridges In Washington
The I-5 Skagit River bridge collapse is just one of a number of major bridge failures in Washington's history. Washington is home to four of the nation's 11 floating bridges, two of which have sunk.
As the quote by President Bill Clinton goes, one of the highest priorities on everyone's mind is the state of the economy. The International Monetary Fund released its most recent report on the state of the US economy this week. And the Fed says it will start rolling back its stimulus plan soon. So, what does this mean for US economic recovery? Felix Salmon is a financial reporter for Reuters. He explains the latest in economic news.
For months now, we’ve known that six underground storage tanks at the Hanford nuclear reservation have been leaking radioactive waste. Now, the worst of these tanks may be leaking contaminated waste into the soil. Yesterday, radioactive material was detected outside the tank. Jeannie Yandel talks with King 5 investigate reporter Susannah Frame, who has been following this story closely.
Gun rights proponents are promoting a new gun rights initiative, I-591. This initiative would prevent Washington state from adopting background check laws that are more restrictive than the federal standards and would also prohibit any confiscation of firearms without due process. David Hyde talks about the proposal with Allan Gottlieb, chairman of the committee, Protect our Guns, the group behind Initiative 591.