Dear Friends and Neighbors,
This week we saw once again the power of an organized, grassroots effort as several hundred people visited Olympia to protest an immunization bill. With the recent outbreak of measles in Southwest Washington, there is talk once again of eliminating or restricting parental rights to opt-out of certain immunizations.
Today, we saw over 300 people sign-in to testify against House Bill 1638 which would eliminate the philosophical or personal objection exemption for the measles, mumps, and rubella vaccine, commonly known as the MMR vaccine. I continue to believe that everyone should be vaccinated and if I had children, my wife and I would choose to vaccinate them. However, I also believe that decisions like this are best left up to parents and their doctors. Healthcare freedoms and parental rights are two issues we should not take lightly. We'll see where this issue ends up over the next few weeks.
Despite record revenue collections and $4.2 billion more this budget cycle than last, there are some Democrats that still insist on pushing for a state income tax. If you'd like to read more about this effort, the legislation passed, the IRS's response to Congressman Dan Newhouse, and our continuing fight to prevent a state and local income tax (we're looking at you, Seattle), click here.
Independent Contractors – the attack continues!
While the Democrat senator who sponsored the bill which would devastate hairdressers, hairstylists and cosmetologists declared her bill was dead for the session, there is still a concentrated attack against independent contractors and sole proprietors.
House Bill 1515 and Senate Bill 5513, both sponsored by Democrats, would not just hurt hairdressers, but all independent contractors and sole proprietors. We're talking about certain home healthcare workers, certain janitors, construction workers, carpenters, delivery drivers, truck drivers and more. The truck driver one really gets me as trucking is such an integral part of our local agriculture-based economies. And according to economists and industry leaders, we are facing a severe statewide shortage of truck drivers right now as a vast number of current truckers reach retirement age.
I and my House Republican colleagues stand united against these bills and any other efforts to hurt small businesses and our local economies.
As we've seen with the hairdressers and those concerned with immunizations, the key to effective participation in YOUR state government is to get organized, activate and let your voice be heard! Many of you have contacted me about your concerns over potential gun legislation. You know where I stand on efforts to curb our Second Amendment rights, but it's not enough. If people don't show up, speak out and get involved, I fear bad legislation will pass this session.
Thank you for reading my email update and for allowing me to serve you in Olympia.