Sen. Tracey Eide, D-Federal Way, issued the following statement today regarding the Senate’s failure to pass a transportation revenue package during the 2014 legislative session.
“I am profoundly disappointed that the Senate has gone two straight years without passing the revenue package that is so desperately needed in communities across our state.
“There is no excuse for this. Negotiations have been difficult but this was not impossible. All it required was a sincere will on the part of Senate Republicans. Instead, they have resorted to playing the blame game. This doesn’t pass the chuckle test — not when you are in the majority and control the floor and can pass any bill you want.
“The facts are clear. Last session, after the House passed a transportation package, Senate Democrats tried to force the package to the Senate floor. Senate Republicans blocked us. This was a year in which we watched a bridge fall, yet Senate Republicans refused to allow a package to maintain our infrastructure.
“At the outset of the 2014 session, Sen. Tom said a transportation package ‘was not a priority’ for the Republican majority. Later in session, Sen. King suggested the state wait until next December.
“Senate Democrats found this unacceptable and continued to push for a package. With time running out in session, I invited Sen. King last week to hear and exec the latest Republican proposal — not our proposal but the proposal his caucus wants — so we would bring it to the floor for action.
“As you can see, no action was taken. Instead of bringing their proposal to the floor, Republicans held a press conference to blame me and my caucus for their own failure to lead.
“At this point, I have no choice but to conclude that Sen. Tom’s and Sen. King’s earlier comments more accurately represented their caucus’ stance from the start. Anyone who tells you it was Senate Democrats who lacked the will to pass a package this session is just looking for a skirt to hide behind.”