Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Washington State House Bill Canceling 2012 Primary Passes Committee

After losing momentum, at least in terms of legislative action, in recent weeks the two bills to cancel the 2012 presidential primary in Washington state have picked up steam in the last few weeks. The House version, HB 1324, was passed by the State Government and Tribal Affairs Committee by a vote of 9-2 earlier today. On the Senate side, SB 5119 was passed by the Senate Ways and Means Committee during the last week in March and has since been referred to the Rules Committee there.

Earlier, it had appeared that both bills had fallen victim to the cross-over deadline for bills to have been considered and sent over to the other chamber. However, because both bills deal with fiscal matters -- a potential savings of over $10 million is on the line if these bills are passed and enacted -- those deadlines were not applicable.

This is another instance of a unified Democratically-controlled state government making a decision on primary timing that could have implications similar to those discussed in FHQ's post on Massachusetts earlier today. As was the case in Maryland, these bills were both introduced at the request of the governor.

The Washington state legislature adjourns later this month (April 24).

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