Thursday, May 2, 2019
► In today’s Seattle Times — Repealing ban on affirmative action a milestone achievement (editorial) — Initiative 1000 will end Washington’s 20-year ban on affirmative action without quotas or preferential treatment. It clears longstanding obstructions that prevented Washington’s public colleges and employers from working toward diversity goals in line with the makeup of the state’s population… By avoiding the clumsy mechanisms of quotas and preferential treatment, legislative approval of I-1000 has created a means for Washington to correct a series of historical wrongs equitably. For employment and education opportunities to truly reflect the diversity of the state, the public sector requires the ability to address inequities while maintaining fairness. The passage of I-1000 is a milestone toward building such a system.
ALSO TODAY at The Stand — I-1000’s passage is a victory for the people (by Cherika Carter)
► From Crosscut — ‘This is a civil rights moment’: Behind the Legislature’s decision to reverse WA’s affirmative action ban — A new class of lawmakers in Olympia made I-1000 a priority. Bluffing, brinkmanship and good timing helped get it passed.
► In today’s Spokesman-Review — Despite more state money, Spokane Public Schools plans to lay off employees — Even that added revenue would likely not save many of the 182 certificated employees who were given layoff notifications on April 11. Classified staff will receive layoff notices on Thursday.
► From The Stranger — Washington state passed a bunch of good health care bills this year. Here’s a look. — This year the Legislature passed bills that will lower the cost of health care for people on Obamacare, increase transparency in drug pricing, ensure equal reproductive health care access to LGBTQ people, create a new long-term care system, and possibly put the state on the path to developing a single-payer system.
► In today’s (Everett) Herald — AG’s legal tab in Eyman case nears $1M with trial a year away — The anti-tax activist will be tried in July 2020 on charges he repeatedly broke state election laws. The AG’s office says the bulk of its costs are related to Eyman’s delay in responding to discovery requests. Superior Court Judge James Dixon has found Eyman in contempt for not turning over documents sought by the state and the fines are mounting daily.
► In today’s Seattle Times — Amazon security workers hold May Day rally as contract is up for bid — SIS employees and union organizers chanted, beat drums and hoisted signs on the street outside Amazon’s Doppler office tower on Wednesday afternoon as the broader May Day march and rally came down 7th Avenue. Meanwhile, on-the-clock security officers for SIS controlled the entrances to Amazon’s buildings as nearby streets filled with police and protesters. SEIU Local 6 is stepping up the on-and-off campaign it began in 2012 when Amazon switched from union contractor Andrews International to SIS.
► In today’s Seattle Times — Peaceful march for immigrants’ rights highlights May Day in Seattle — Hundreds of people marched for more than three hours Wednesday through downtown Seattle to call attention to workers’ and immigrants’ rights, denounce the immigration policies of the Trump administration and protest various other issues.
► In today’s Spokesman-Review — Spokane’s May Day March takes stand against local agencies working with border patrol
► In today’s Yakima H-R — May Day march in Yakima encourages civil participation among all local immigrants
► In today’s Seattle Times — Boeing appoints legal czar to oversee fallout from fatal MAX crashes — Facing an onslaught of lawsuits and a criminal investigation, Boeing announced Wednesday the appointment of a newly created czar to oversee all legal matters arising from two deadly crashes of 737 MAX jetliners. J. Michael Luttig, 64, who has served as Boeing’s general counsel since 2006, was named counselor and senior adviser to Boeing Chairman and CEO Dennis Muilenburg and the company’s board of directors.
► From Bloomberg — Boeing wants to move crash lawsuits from Chicago to Indonesia — The plaintiffs say shifting the cases 10,000 miles away would lessen the company’s financial liability.
► In today’s (Everett) Herald — Rep. Larsen’s subcommittee plans hearing on Boeing 737 MAX — The House Subcommittee on Aviation will examine the status of the plane since its March grounding.
► In today’s Columbian — Boeing’s woes could ground state’s economy (editorial) — In attempting to re-establish their company as the global leader in aviation, Boeing officials must effectively address these issues rather than hope they go away. Failing to successfully navigate the crisis could help ground the economy throughout Washington.
OBSTRUCTION OF JUSTICE
► In today’s Washington Post — Barr is a no-show at House hearing on Mueller report as Democrats warn of threat to democracy — Attorney General William P. Barr was a no-show Thursday for the House Judiciary Committee hearing on his handling of special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s report, angering House Democrats who moved closer to holding him in contempt of Congress.
► In today’s Washington Post — William Barr torched his reputation. His testimony compounded the damage. (editorial) — Much of Wednesday’s Senate hearing centered on the attorney general’s decision to release a highly misleading representation of the findings of special counsel Robert Mueller III’s Russia investigation. In particular, Barr failed to acknowledge the alarming nature of Mueller’s analysis on whether President Trump obstructed justice, and he did not explain why the special counsel declined to say whether Trump was guilty of the charge. This really matters: Given the damning account in Mueller’s report, what appeared to be keeping the special counsel from accusing the president of criminal acts was not the lack of evidence but the fact that the president cannot be charged under Justice Department rules…. It is long past time the public stopped hearing Barr’s views on how Mueller feels, and heard from the special counsel himself. The special counsel should address not only his substantive findings on the president’s misbehavior but also the attorney general’s manipulation of his work. Not just Trump should be held accountable for his actions. So should his attorney general.
► In today’s NY Times — How Trump co-opts leaders like Bill Barr (by former FBI Director James Comey, who was fired by Trump) — Accomplished people lacking inner strength can’t resist the compromises necessary to survive this president.
► From HuffPost — Companies backing NAFTA overhaul outsourced hundreds of thousands of jobs — Multinational corporations pressing Congress to adopt an updated version of the NAFTA shed over half a million U.S. jobs for trade-related reasons since NAFTA took effect, according to a new analysis of government data.
► From MSNBC —
— AFL-CIO (@AFLCIO) April 30, 2019
► From The Hill — Trump ruling boosts gig economy firms — A Trump administration decision identifying gig economy workers at one company as “independent contractors” rather than “employees” could have massive implications for the tech industry.
► From Politico — Trump’s infrastructure deal with Democrats leaves GOP rolling its eyes — Every few months, Trump gets in the negotiating room with Democrats and everyone leaves happy — except for the president’s own party. This week’s huddle on a $2 trillion infrastructure bill was no different.
► From HuffPost — Florida Legislature votes ‘yes’ to arming teachers — Fedrick Ingram, the head of the Florida Education Association, said arming teachers was ultimately a “wrong decision” stemming from the “wrong conversation.” “Unfortunately, [lawmakers] have not asked teachers how to make these schools safer, because any teacher will tell you that we need to be talking about counseling and mental health issues. Those are the things that will stop these issues before they happen.”
► From The Onion — RockStar Games begins imprisoning programmers for ‘Red Dead Redemption 3’ — “We’ve herded an incredibly talented team of programmers into holding pens, and they’re already hard at work making sure Red Dead 3 is the most immersive installment in franchise history,” said Rockstar producer and company president Sam Houser.
The Stand posts links to Washington state and national news of interest every weekday morning by 10 a.m.