The Goldendale Sentinel - Headlines & History since 1879

By Guest Editorial Roger Harnack
Publisher Free Press Publishing 

A fresh twist on a separate state

 

January 29, 2020



A Seattle columnist is metaphorically calling for creation of the state of “King.” He has revived an old idea, that King County secede from Washington.

Hey, King County, you’ve got my vote for statehood.

We should’ve gotten to this divorce at several times in our state history already. This time is different, however. Seattle-ites and King County elitists are bitter the rest of the state rebelled, resoundingly rejecting their high-tax theology. The straw that broke the camel’s back: Initiative 976, the Tim Eyman measure that caps the cost of licensing tab fees at $30 for most non-commercial vehicles.

Those elitists lament the “anti-democratic” election in which all of eastern Washington, and most of Western Washington stood up and said “no” to the ever-increasing tab fees and taxes.

Ironic, isn’t it. Just last year, those same “left coasties” pushed through an extreme gun-control measure, Initiative 1639.

They think it is OK for them to try to take our Second Amendment rights. They think it is OK to take our right to drinking water (Hirst decision). They think it’s OK to try to breach our dams. But they don’t think it’s OK for us to make our own decisions.

You know what they say about karma.

Neither Seattle nor King County knows what’s best for eastern Washington. Those of us who grew up, live and work here, are best suited to make the decisions regarding our water, land, fish, forests, and timber.

By the same token, those of us living on rural roads lacking traffic jams, drinking water from personal wells and grumbling about alternative lifestyles do not know what’s best for Seattle and King County. King County residents should know how to best help their homeless residents, drug addicts, and motorists.

We want to keep our heritage, culture, and lifestyle. King County wants to change theirs. We want to remember where we came from and how we got here. King County would rather deny theirs and embrace their extreme “wokeness.” We get it. We’re different. We’re OK with that.

Here’s to the state of King, where King County residents can choose to keep the over-inflated minimum wage, expensive fees and taxes, homeless problems, traffic congestion, gun control, failed light rail, duplicitous politicians, and “woke” outrage. You can even allow an income tax in your new state Constitution.

We’ll keep our ranches and farms, our timber industry, our lifestyle, culture and heritage.

And we’ll be good neighbors. We’ll keep our dams and continue to sell you electricity, albeit probably at a higher rate. We’ll also sell you grass-fed beef, fresh dairy products, fruit, vegetables, and even grapes and hops for your alcohol needs. We’ll even let you come here to vacation, provided you leave your politics at home.

We’ll vote to support your statehood and won’t be bitter or petty if you want to go your own way. Don’t worry about us; our economy will be just fine. We may not have the high-tax revenue. But without excessive government programs, rules and regulations, we won’t need it. And when economic times get tough here, we won’t come begging for a bailout.

For the last three years, Reps. Matt Shea and Bob McCaslin, R-Spokane Valley, have introduced a bill to begin the 51st state governmental process. Before them, the late Sen. Bob Morton, R-Orient, did the same in the early 2000s. Referred to committee, none of the bills has seen the light of day.

Surely, by now most Eastern Washington lawmakers will sign onto a bill from “state of King” representatives seeking independence. With Democrats firmly in control of the House, Senate, and the governor’s mansion, and with support from our side’s mostly Republican delegation, the “state of King” would almost be a done deal.

King County, statehood is yours for the taking. Good luck and Godspeed.

 

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