Writings and observations

Determining why

The Washington Supreme Court notwithstanding, it’s always hard to know voter intent – to know, that is, why voters tossed to one side of the fence as opposed to the other.

Why for example did the Puget Sound area voters so decisively reject the transportation-funding Proposition 1? Everyone has their pet explanation; which one you choose probably has a lot to do with your political outlook.

Fortunately, we do now at least have a poll that clarifies some of this. Conducted by EMC Research and Moore Information for Sound Transit, it tracked the main reasons people gave for rejecting the proposition. (This graph from the report came from Horse’s Ass.)

opposition reasons

Sound Transit’s take: “In general, the survey showed that “No” voters rejected the package because they saw it as too big and too costly. However, the survey also showed that traffic and transportation issues continue to be the top concern of voters in the Puget Sound region. Other survey findings conclude that a strong majority of voters continue to support light rail. Survey respondents said that in moving forward, transportation measures should take a more incremental approach and contain strong, clear accountability measures.”

David Goldstein’s: “The short term reality is that while light rail expansion remains popular in theory, its cost and available funding mechanisms do not, and it appears to be far from the region’s number one transportation priority, with 91% of respondents emphasizing the need to fix unsafe roads and bridges, compared to only 55% prioritizing building light rail east to Bellevue and Redmond. (Though ironically, only 57% of respondents prioritize replacing the 520 bridge. Go figure.)”

Well, even surveys are subject of mixed opinions . . .

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