Diary

Union Negotiates State Contract While Running TV Ads for Governor

Interestingly, the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) is spending thousands upon thousands of dollars on TV, radio and print ads helping Washington State’s Democratic Gov. Christine Gregoire get reelected. This is the same Governor that the SEIU is negotiating a new contract with for state workers in that union. Naturally, Gregoire’s Republican opponents are crying conflict of interest, and its hard to deny their charge.

Republican candidate for Gov. Dino Rossi is saying that this is a definite conflict of interest. “When you have one party, whether it’s Republican or Democrat,” Rossi said, “that’s in power for so long, you end up with the appearance of institutional corruption, and that’s what this looks like.”

Rossi is also pointing to the favors Gregoire gave to Indian Casino owners for campaign support as a conflict.

The complaints don’t stop there. State Republicans suggest there is a pattern that started with a deal Gregoire made with Indian gaming tribes, which helped bankroll the second recount that put Gregoire into office.

The governor had approved a major expansion of gambling but scrapped a provision requiring casinos to give the state a cut of the profits — a provision demanded by every other state with tribal gaming.

“When you drive up a $2.7 billion budget deficit by treating those very, very well that contribute to your campaign and your re-election, that’s where the red flags go up,” Republican state Rep. Doug Ericksen said.

Naturally, neither Gregoire, nor the Indian tribe officials, nor the SEIU’s officials wanted to comment on the story.

In any case, after the stolen 2006 election, its a sure thing that the GOP is looking for everything they can use to gain votes this time.

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