A success story from the Washington Legislature

Bipartisan cooperation on the Senate budget shows good things happen when both parties work together

Note: This e-newsletter originally was distributed to Sen. Gildon’s subscribers Feb. 29, 2024. To subscribe to Sen. Gildon’s e-newsletters, click here. 

See this week’s update from Olympia by clicking here.

Dear Friends and Neighbors

It’s not often you hear good-news stories in politics, but I have one to share this week. It’s about our budget proposal in the Senate. For the second year in a row, Republicans and Democrats worked closely together to come up with a budget proposal reflecting the priorities of both sides.

As the assistant ranking member on the Senate Ways and Means Committee, I was proud to be part of the team that wrote this year’s $71.6 billion proposal. We have a week to go in our 2024 legislative session, and there are still differences to work out with the House. I hope you can take a moment to watch the video above. In times like these, a political success story is refreshing indeed.


Three initiatives are poised for approval by Legislature

Three more are on deck for November

A packed hearing room as Initiative 2111 gets a hearing Tuesday. The measure would prohibit the Washington Legislature from passing an income tax.

Three of the six initiatives submitted to the Legislature this year got hearings this week, and they are poised to receive votes in the House and Senate before we adjourn our regular legislative session on March 7. These initiatives would prohibit the Washington Legislature from passing an income tax, restore the ability of police to chase fleeing suspects, and establish parental rights in education.

Sign-ups at these hearings demonstrated what many of us already know. These measures enjoy enthusiastic support from the public.

These initiatives challenge key elements of the agenda our majority colleagues have pursued since 2018, and until last week, we didn’t know if they would permit votes on any of them. By passing them before we adjourn, our colleagues head off a vote on the November ballot they surely would lose.

Meanwhile, three other initiatives will advance to the ballot due to legislative inaction. They are:

  • Initiative 2117, repealing the cap-and-trade law that has increased the price of gas about 50 cents a gallon.
  • Initiative 2124, allowing Washington workers to opt out of a mandatory payroll tax for a troubled long-term-care benefits plan, and
  • Initiative 2109, repealing Washington’s new income tax on capital gains.

I wish we could vote on these measures. I support all six. We are likely to hear wild claims as the election approaches that these measures would devastate state programs. As one of the authors of this year’s budget, I can assure you they will not. We have contingency plans in place to ensure state programs will function smoothly and the sky will not fall. The people are sending us an important message this year, and I believe we should listen.


Thanks for reading — it is an honor serving you!






Sen. Chris Gildon, 25th Legislative District

Deputy Leader, Senate Republican Caucus


Contact me!

PHONE: (360) 786-7648

E-MAIL: Chris.Gildon@leg.wa.gov

MAILING ADDRESS: P.O. Box 40425/ Olympia, WA  98504


NOTE: Written communications are subject to disclosure under the Washington Public Records Act.