Among the dreary Democratic functionaries I met at last week's transportation town hall, the most notable was my own state Representative, Ed Murray, who is also chairman of the House Transportation Committee.
Murray, who was appointed to the House in 1995, has been re-elected to his position with a suspicious 100% of the vote every two years since. He himself admits:
"It's true, it's been years and years since I've knocked on doors or spent any time campaigning in my own district," Murray said.And it shows!
The dull, pasty-faced Murray is less a politician or even a "representative" than he is a Kremlin-style career bureaucrat, appointed by one committee to advocate its interests on another committee.
In addition to his ineffectual hand-wringing over Sound Transit the other night, I've documented other instances of Murray's arrogant duplicity.
And then there is Murray on the Monorail. We were all milling around after the formal meeting the other night and another member of the audience came up to Murray and asked him to do something to put the kaibosh on the Monorail. Murray expressed the same sort of sympathy about flaws with the Monorail that he did about flaws in Sound Transit and said:
"There's nothing we can do in the legislature to stop the Monorail. I looked, but there's nothing we can do."To which I responded:
But with all due respect, sir, you were the main sponsor of the House bill that would have given the Monorail its only enforceable way to collect revenue.Murray:
That's right. I believe that people should have to pay the taxes they approve. But unfortunately it failed in the Senate, so it's not going to happen.Me:
But the Monorail measure that the voters approved didn't include any kind of enforceable collection mechanism. How can you say that there's nothing you can do to stop the Monorail when you acted to give it new powers that the voters didn't?Murray, who apparently hasn't spent enough time with the real people in his district to have learned how to suffer constituents who don't suffer fools gladly, turned a pasty shade of red and snarled back at me: "It's not going to happen."
Some free political advice, Ed: Ringing doorbells in the district this summer would be time well spent.Posted by Stefan Sharkansky at May 24, 2004 01:10 PM