Government and Politics

Political news

Mixed Results For Northwest Marijuana Measures

Nov 7, 2012

PORTLAND – The Northwest delivered mixed results were mixed for two marijuana legalization measures on the ballot. Voters in Washington approved an initiative to legalize pot in limited quantities. But voters in Oregon rejected an attempt to allow recreational use of the drug.

Measure 80 chief petitioner Paul Stanford says he's not giving up.

"We'll be back with another initiative in 2014. We're here to stay. We're not going away. And we're going to see full national legalization of marijuana over the next five years. I'm sure of that."

BOISE - Idaho voters delivered a resounding defeat to three new education laws. Voters said no to limits on teacher bargaining rights, to creating a pay-for-performance system and to ramping up classroom technology. Opponents were successful, in part, by billing the laws as an attack on teachers.

When the first results came in, the Vote No campaign brought out the bagpipes.

Opponents of Props 1, 2 and 3 went head-to-head with Idaho's Republican state superintendent Tom Luna, who pushed the laws through the legislature.

Same-Sex Marriage Sponsor Says Votes Send National Message

Nov 7, 2012

If current trends hold, Washington appears headed toward legalizing same-sex marriage. But opponents of Referendum 74 say the vote is still too close to call and they’re not conceding defeat. At this hour, the “pro” side is leading 52 to 48 percent.

State Senator Ed Murray was the chief sponsor of the marriage equality bill in the Washington legislature. He said he's confident the same-sex marriage referendum will pass.

RICHLAND, Wash. – Last night’s election put Washington’s electoral map on display. For the most part, Western counties near the Puget Sound voted one way, while Eastern Washington voted more conservative on the issues of same-sex marriage, legalizing marijuana and in the race for governor. Correspondent Anna King attended a Republican campaign party in Richland,

An alleged case of ballot tampering in Oregon’s Clackamas County has implications for races statewide. Officials say a volunteer elections worker is suspected of marking votes for Republicans in races a voter had left blank.

Clackamas County is considered a key swing area in statewide races in Oregon. It's also home to several hotly contested legislative districts that could determine the balance of power in the Oregon House.

Pastors Use Pulpits To Ease Election Day Rancor

Nov 4, 2012

PORTLAND — In this election, religion has sometimes played a divisive role. But on election night, churches throughout the Northwest — and the country — will try to use their pulpits to ease the rancor of politics.

Electoral politics don’t always have the nicest soundtrack. You’ve heard the ominous music in the ads.

“Good for them — bad for us,” says one spot.

“Doesn’t America deserve better?” says another.

OLYMPIA, Wash. – New polls show Washington’s open race for governor remains close. Already hundreds of thousands of Washington voters have returned their ballots. Many more will do so in the coming days. But county auditors have a warning to voters who wait until the last minute.

In Oregon you have to have your ballot in by 8pm on Election night. But in Washington you just have to have your ballot postmarked. That means for days after the election ballots keep on rolling in and they get counted -– unless the postmark is past the due date.

What if there was a crystal ball that could reveal the outcome of an election? Turns out modern day campaigns use forecast models to project the winner of a race long before a single vote is counted.

In vote-by-mail states like Washington or Oregon, political parties and campaigns have an advantage. They can find out on a daily basis if you’ve returned your ballot.

Northwest Election Law Hotlines Tend To Be Snoozers

Oct 30, 2012

This election day, the U.S. Department of Justice will have federal attorneys in every state, ready to take complaints. It's a long-standing program aimed at combating election fraud and voter rights abuses. But the hotlines tend to be pretty quiet in the Northwest.

The election day program has been around for decades. But attorneys in Oregon and eastern Washington say -– at least in recent memory -– they haven't gotten any complaints. Western Washington received a few calls in 2008 about voter registration issues.

Washington Considers Another Impact Of Wolves: Skinny Cows

Oct 30, 2012

Washington ranchers who can show that wolves are making their cattle lose weight could get reimbursed under a new proposal. The rule before the Fish and Wildlife Commission would expand a compensation program for ranchers living in wolf country.

Washington’s cattle ranchers aren’t the first to complain about skinny livestock. Ranchers in Idaho and Oregon also say the reintroduction of wolves has made sheep and cattle move more and eat less.

That translates into the bottom line, says Dave Ware. He’s the game manager with the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife.

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