What Washingtonians told us on November 5

2019 interim • November 15, 2019 

The Current -- 2017 legislative session

Dear Friend:  

I want to congratulate Rep. Alex Ybarra on his election victory in the 13th District. While results still need to be certified, it is clear he will win his race with almost 75% of the vote and return to the House next year.  

Alex was appointed to his seat last January and wasted no time in making a difference in the legislative session, including having a bill passed and signed into law. Alex is an important part of our team and I encourage you to learn more about his story.   


The recent election produced interesting results both at the state and local levels. I discuss some of these outcomes, including what Washingtonians told us about new taxes, in my recent video update.

The outcome that will have the greatest impact on the 2020 legislative session is the passage of I-976 ($30 car tabs). It has already produced lawsuits, dire predictions and even calls for revenge from Democrats.  

I think everyone needs to take a step back, understand the strong signal that Washingtonians sent, and work together to fill the gap and adjust to new fiscal realities. That won't be easy, but state lawmakers are expected to make difficult decisions. I also believe it's important for Democrats to reflect on how they can rebuild trust with the public on transportation issues -- particularly in Pierce and Snohomish counties. 


On the local level, what happened in Spokane -- the state's second largest city -- was encouraging. Residents there overwhelmingly supported a measure to ban the city from imposing an income tax. Our caucus will continue to oppose any new taxes on your income -- including local income taxes, a capital gains income tax and a state income tax.

Spokane residents also chose Nadine Woodward for their mayor. In addition to Nadine, that area of the state has Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers, Reps. Jacquelin MaycumberMary Dye, Jenny Graham, and other strong, Republican women leaders.   

Committee Assembly Days

Both the House and Senate will return to Olympia for Committee Assembly Days, November 21-22. On Thursday, our caucus will continue an important discussion on its legislative priorities that began at a retreat a few weeks ago. We have two months to refine proposals centered on safe communities, homelessness, cost of living, and accountable government. I look forward to sharing more details in the future.  

Veterans Day

Our nation paused on Monday to honor the men and women of its armed forces. If you are a veteran, on behalf of our caucus I would like to say: "thank you." We appreciate your commitment and sacrifice.  

The Washington Department of Veterans Affairs website is a great resource for information on veterans' benefits, services and programs. You can also follow the agency on Facebook.


Rep. J.T. Wilcox
House Republican Leader
(360) 786-7912

Rep. Chris Corry

Supporting foster care families

Rep. Chris Corry wants Washington state to become a model of foster care support for families. The 14th District lawmaker recently met with the president of Fostering Change Washington to discuss his legislation that would help lessen the complexities of transferring custody to non-family guardians. Watch his video by clicking on this link.

Rep. Jim Walsh

Rural health care access

Lack of access to adequate health care in rural parts of the state continues to be a problem. Rep. Jim Walsh visited Naselle to discuss the capital budget and how it can help provide funding for the construction and remodeling of smaller medical facilities. Learn more about this issue here.

Republicans in the news

Lawmaker wants outside counsel to defend possible I-976 lawsuit (KING TV)

Rash of nursing home closures in Washington prompts proposals to raise Medicaid rates (NW News Network)

Republicans, outraged by no dam-breaching session in Tri-Cities, get their way (Tri-City Herald)

Interstate 5 Bridge committee holds first official meeting (The Columbian) 

Lawmaker says pressure from Washington, California forced NCAA student-athlete income rule change (KING TV) 

State receives additional $2.5 million to help clear rape kit backlog (Yakima Herald-Republic)

Local WA State Rep. Joe Schmick blasts L&I for fining City of Pullman for Fire Department’s flash flood rescue (Pullman Radio)

Drug treatment a possible solution for region's homeless, says Rep. Jenny Graham (KXLY TV) 

Rep. Keith Goehner

The importance of agriculture

Washington state farms produce more than 300 commodities. In 2017, the value of the state's agricultural production totaled $10.6 billion. Yet, the industry still faces serious challenges. Rep. Keith Goehner discusses some of these challenges and what the Legislature can do to address them in this video.

Washington State House Republicans






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