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The Seattle Times covers politics and government in Seattle, the Eastside, Washington state and the Northwest. Topics include lawmaking and policy; the mayor, city and county councils; the state Legislature and Supreme Court; and city, county and state ag

Last Build Date: Wed, 17 Jan 2018 14:30:27 -0800


Haunted by a ghost car and bureaucracy: “I’m in some ‘Twilight Zone’ episode”

Wed, 17 Jan 2018 06:00:00 -0800

It was bad enough that Philip Corsano’s classic Jaguar was sold off without his permission. But then the tickets and bills began rolling in.

House bill would require train-stopping technology, following Washington Amtrak derailment

Wed, 17 Jan 2018 06:00:00 -0800

The federal government would provide $2.6 billion, for stragglers to finish positive train control networks by this year’s deadline.

Activist Maru Mora-Villalpando says ICE using deportation threat as ‘intimidation tactic’

Tue, 16 Jan 2018 11:44:37 -0800

Activist Maru Mora-Villalpando, an undocumented immigrant, says federal immigration officials are using an “intimidation tactic” by putting her into deportation proceedings.

Former Washington governor, King County executive John Spellman dies

Tue, 16 Jan 2018 09:01:55 -0800

John D. Spellman, Washington’s 18th governor and the first King County executive, has died at age 91.

Rep. Pramila Jayapal to boycott State of the Union address due to ‘racism’ from White House

Tue, 16 Jan 2018 07:17:41 -0800

In a message to her constituents on Martin Luther King Jr. Day, U.S. Rep. Pramila Jayapal of Seattle said she would not attend the speech because of "racism and hatred" from President Donald Trump.

Oregon considers cap-and-trade system for carbon emissions

Mon, 15 Jan 2018 19:22:16 -0800

The program would be designed to link with existing markets in California and Canada.

Now in the majority, Washington state Democrats press for tighter gun laws

Mon, 15 Jan 2018 19:05:43 -0800

Emboldened by their new one-vote majority in the state Senate, Democrats are pushing forward on gun regulations in the Washington Legislature, such as bans on bump-stocks and high-capacity magazines. But with a closely divided Legislature, it’s easier said than done.

Democrats in Olympia still wrestling with car-tab tax cut

Mon, 15 Jan 2018 06:00:00 -0800

Democrats in Olympia want to move quickly to cut car-tab taxes, which are being calculated based on inflated car values. But a bill that passed overwhelmingly last year was delayed as legislators consider the financial hit it to Sound Transit.

Washington state will require court order to release driver’s license info to immigration authorities

Mon, 15 Jan 2018 06:00:00 -0800

After a Seattle Times report that the Washington State Department of Licensing was giving personal information to federal immigration authorities 20 to 30 times a month, the agency announced a number of changes and the resignation of a deputy director.

Thousands expected to attend Seattle Women’s March, related events

Sun, 14 Jan 2018 08:00:00 -0800

New this year, organizers have scheduled a series of events to spotlight gender, race and politics that coincide with the massive march — a packed weekend that organizers hope will re-energize Seattle’s activist spirit.

‘Why not me?’ More women are running for public office to change politics in Washington state and across the U.S.

Sun, 14 Jan 2018 06:00:00 -0800

An unprecedented number of women were elected to public office in 2017, and 2018 is shaping up as a banner year as well, with thousands of women lining up to run nationally, including at least 79 for governorships.

Enrollment in Washington state’s Obamacare could top last year’s

Sat, 13 Jan 2018 07:00:52 -0800

Washington state will likely increase the number of people enrolled in Obamacare this year. So far 9,000 more people have signed for coverage this year than at the end of enrollment last year.

Gov. Inslee’s climate-change advisers draw scrutiny as his national profile rises

Sat, 13 Jan 2018 06:00:00 -0800

As Gov. Jay Inslee presses an ambitious carbon-tax plan for Washington state, two of his climate-change policy advisers are drawing attention. One works remotely from Morocco, while the other’s job is funded through a grant by the World Resources Institute.

Ideas for revamping old tunnel run through Seattle’s blind spot

Fri, 12 Jan 2018 19:35:03 -0800

Fanciful proposals for what to do with Seattle’s old Battery Street Tunnel all overlook the obvious: That it would make a fine, and desperately needed, roadway for cars and buses.

Washington lawmakers outraged over state giving driver’s-license info to immigration officers

Fri, 12 Jan 2018 19:16:02 -0800

“There’s definitely rage and outrage,” said the state Senate’s majority whip, reacting to revelations that the Department of Licensing has been routinely sharing information with immigration-enforcement agents. Democrats plan to introduce legislation to stop it.

China fills a void, while Trump wants more Scandinavians immigrating instead of people from ‘shithole countries’

Fri, 12 Jan 2018 19:00:46 -0800

We kick off a series of weekly posts that collect some of the most interesting news stories about President Donald Trump. Between tweets this past week, he attended a bipartisan meeting, where he wondered aloud why the U.S. can't have more immigrants from Norway instead of places such as Haiti.

Podcast: As Seattle faces an even worse traffic nightmare, do officials have a plan or are they just managing through the mess?

Fri, 12 Jan 2018 06:00:45 -0800

What is the ‘period of maximum constraint’ for Seattle-area traffic? Transportation reporter Mike Lindblom joins The Overcast politics podcast this week to explain.

Inslee seeks meeting with interior secretary to try to shield Washington waters from oil drilling

Thu, 11 Jan 2018 18:28:47 -0800

U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke last week released a plan to open nearly all waters off the nation’s coastlines to oil and gas drilling, including a new lease sale off Oregon and Washington.

Washington state regularly gives drivers’ info to immigration authorities; Inslee orders temporary halt

Thu, 11 Jan 2018 15:01:36 -0800

Despite vowing not to cooperate with President Donald Trump’s immigration agenda, Washington state has regularly been giving out personal information used by ICE to arrest and deport people. After The Seattle Times raised questions, the governor told an agency to stop.

Ex-deputy who accused former Sheriff John Urquhart of groping files countersuit

Thu, 11 Jan 2018 13:57:42 -0800

Brian Barnes contends the former sheriff defamed him by publicly describing the allegation as a malicious, politically motivated lie, as well as by labeling Barnes an “organizational terrorist” who habitually files false claims against supervisors.