Despite promise to “protect” them, trade spats are bad news for Washington farmers

It seemed, for a moment, like a bright spot on trade: A year after pulling out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), President Trump suggested last week that the U.S. might rejoin the trade agreement. That was a welcome prospect for Washington farmers and others who are nervously watching other countries forge closer trade ties while […]

McKenna on KIRO: Gorsuch joins liberal justices on immigration case

KIRO 97.3 host Dave Ross asked Rob about a recent immigration case at the U.S. Supreme Court where the newest justice, Neil Gorsuch, joined with the four liberal justices to invalidate a requirement to deport. The majority ruled in Sessions v. Dimaya that the law was unconstitutionally vague. Dave Ross: “Clarence Thomas is also an […]

Why have a Rainy Day Fund if state leaders don’t even grasp its purpose?

We will suffer another economic downturn at some point – that’s a given. The “when” is unpredictable, as ample history should make obvious. As much as some like to search after-the-fact for those “voices in the wilderness,” such as those issuing warnings in 2007 of impending problems, those cases may have more to do with […]

McKenna on KIRO: Is Facebook in big trouble over user data?

KIRO 97.3 host Dave Ross asked Rob about the Federal Trade Commission’s new investigation into Facebook. Violations of consumer protection laws and an agreement between the company and the FTC on protecting users’ data could result in massive fines for Facebook. Dave Ross: “So do you think that Facebook is in trouble with this FTC […]

McKenna on KIRO: Abortion, crisis pregnancy centers, and free speech

KIRO 97.3 host Dave Ross asked Rob about Tuesday’s U.S. Supreme Court hearing in National Institute of Family and Life Advocates v. Becerra. The State of California requires that crisis pregnancy centers, which steer women toward adoptions, provide information about how to obtain an abortion. The centers are challenging the law on free speech grounds. […]

McKenna on KIRO: Denied a job over dreadlocks

KIRO 97.3 host Dave Ross asked Rob about a case out of Alabama in which a woman’s job offer was rescinded because of her dreadlocks. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission sued the business, but a Court of Appeals ruled the business did not violate the law. Dave Ross: “So, apparently what saved the employer in […]

Public wants transparency, so shouldn’t Inslee veto SEIU giveaway bill?

The average voter, I think it’s fair to say, didn’t care much for the Legislature’s public records bill. A good chunk of Olympia took a gamble that voters wouldn’t care about a “boring topic” like open government. They bet wrong. The public doesn’t want to see governing conducted in secret. They don’t want legislation passed […]

McKenna on KIRO: Judge rules homeless man’s truck is a home

KIRO 97.3 host Dave Ross asked Rob about last week’s ruling in King County Superior Court that a homeless person’s vehicle can count as a home under the state’s homestead act. Judge Catherine Shaffer also ruled that the impound fees charged to Steven Long to retrieve his truck were unconstitutionally excessive. Dave Ross: “OK, so […]

House Republicans’ mics cut off for pointing out union giveaway

Most eyes in Olympia this week were on the will-he-or-won’t-he veto drama on the legislative records bill – and deservedly so. Legislators took a gamble that voters wouldn’t care too much about this issue. They were wrong, and I hope it clarified for public officials around the state that people care about open government. Lesson […]

McKenna on KIRO: Can you execute a prisoner who forgets the crime?

KIRO 97.3 host Dave Ross asked Rob about a case the U.S. Supreme Court will consider in which a death row inmate’s attorneys argue the man should not be put to death because he cannot remember his crime or understand what is happening to him. Vernon Madison, 67, was convicted in a 1985 murder of […]