Saturday, January 08, 2022

Do we need this proposed law in Washington State since distrust of elections is less of a problem here than in some other states?

Washington Gov. Inslee said that he wants lawmakers to pass legislation making it a gross misdemeanor for elected officials and candidates to spread lies about election results.

One wonders if this is necessary here in Washington State as I think the problem of distrust of the election process is much worse in other states.

Here in Washington, our election processes seem to work well and there is less distrust of government functioning. Such a proposal, in Washington, could be seen as overkill and it could create unnecessary political blowback to Inslee.

The fate of such a bill is dubious given court challenges.

One wonders if it is worth the political capital Inslee might be spending to get this bill passed.

On the other hand, lies, distrust of elections and even violence is a serious problem, nationwide. I think it is more serious in states where politics tends to lean more Republican. Such a bill as this proposal would not likely get to first base in those states.

It does seem like disdain for government is strong; especially among Republicans. I think to the point of anarchy.

I make a connection between severe anti government sentiment and anarchy. Anarchy is, basically, no government.

Even small government, like the famous concept from Grover Norquist, of making government so small one can "drown it in a bathtub," is a dangerous sentiment.

Many of the people who complain the most about government do rely on government for public safety, the military, veteran's benefits, Medicare and so forth.

Too much government and beaurocracy can be a problem, but government is part of the balance along with the private sector.

It does seem strange when people, who wave the flag and call themselves patriots, also say that our (state, federal and local) governments are evil. Kind of a strange irony; especially when it comes from politicians who are in power in the government.

I see this as more of a problem in states that tend to lean Republican. It's hard to say what the best solution to this problem would be. Is passing a law the best solution? It's worth consideration, but the proposal does bring up a lot of questions.

Meanwhile, here in Washington State, it does seem like we have a good election process. Other states may have honest election processes also, but public trust of those processes is more in question.

Remember, I do think outright hatred of government can lead to anarchy. Yes, we did have the Chopp anti police zone that came from the far left in Seattle, Washington, but I tend to think that is part of the action and reaction between right and left extremes.

The Chopp Zone happened in Washington State, but it happened while Trump's extreme presidency was stirring up divisiveness; almost for the fun of it; Trump being a better comedian than president.

Divisiveness and derisive comments about other types of people can be good for media ratings, but calmer tempers and civil society is more to my liking.

For the most part, we do seem to have civil society, here in the state of Washington.

We have mail in balloting in Washington. I like it, but I know some folks don't trust it. Some other states still have polling places complete with the problems of long lines, I'll have to say. We also seem to have a tradition of moderate, responsible Republican Secretaries of State who hold the office overseeing our elections. Our recent Secretary of State, Republican Kim Wyman, was chosen by Democrat Joe Biden for a job related to election security at the national level. By partisanship still alive, I guess.

Years ago, we had Ralph Munro, also a Republican, who I had some personal correspondence with.

That office also over sees state archives and Munro noticed a self published (by photocopy machine) book I did on my 1989 bicycle tour around Washington State. It was on display at the local branch of our State Archives. He was here for a visit and picked up my book. I wasn't there at the time, but people, I know, who work there mentioned that to me. I wrote him, after hearing that and it started a personal correspondence. I sent him some of the books I did about later bicycle trips and he always wrote back appreciating my sharing.

He had a reputation for good relations with the public.

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