Opposition from the left, mustering under the Alliance for Jobs and Clean Energy banner, didn’t help I-732 Photo by Sara Bernard

I-732 Did Really, Really Bad Among Late Undecided Voters

As in, 96 percent voted “no” bad. You can thank the Koch Brothers.

The Seattle-based Elway Poll today released a postmortem on the Washington elections, comparing its polling figures from October to what actually transpired. The numbers show that—unlike the country as a whole—there were few November 8 surprises in the state.

“In contrast to the earthquake that rolled across the country last Tuesday, Washington’s election night held few surprises,” Stuart Elway wrote in a memo released today. “Of the 16 races polled, 13 were correctly anticipated.” However, that doesn’t mean there aren’t interesting nuggets in the data, few more interesting than this: Carbon Washington absolutely collapsed in late-deciding voting—that is, among people who were still undecided about the measure when last polled.

Specifically, in October, I-732 was leading by 8 points in the Elway Poll, with about 40 percent support. That by no means ensured victory, as there were plenty of undecided voters, who tend to vote against ballot measures when it comes time to cast ballots. Even still, it was a bad break for I-732: Of those undecided voters, 96 percent voted no, according to Elway numbers.The measure ended up losing by 18 points.

It’s hard to say what caused such a hard break against the carbon tax measure, since it had so much working against it. The Koch Brothers and other polluters poured money into the no campaign late in the campaign, flooding the airwaves with negative ads.

Meanwhile, it remained dogged by liberal opposition. While this paper and The Stranger both endorsed it, several liberal Stranger writers and the Seattle Times editorial board opposed it. Strange bedfellows indeed!

“It looked like the ‘yes’ side in October was within striking distance, but when the ‘no’ side spent heavily, it re-enforced voters’ inclination to vote for against things they aren’t convinced of,” Elway told Seattle Weekly. “The fact that the ‘yes’ side did not improve in those last few weeks, that’s pretty indicative that they couldn’t budge off their 40.”

Carbon Washington got some timely endorsements from Leonardo DiCaprio, James Hansen and other climate bigwigs, but it was clearly not enough to withstand the onslaught of negativity. You can read our full whodunit here.

Hit twitter for text of the Elway memo:

More in News & Comment

File photo
King County alcohol production ordinance could be approved by year’s end

Update to county code has been more than a year in the making.

Netflix series kept Lynnwood rape survivor in mind, creator says

Susannah Grant was inspired by The Marshall Project and ProPublica reporting to make “Unbelievable.”

Sound Transit seeks input on name change for University Street Station

Vote online or certain dates at station mezzanine

More than 100 horses are being hoarded by a nonprofit in Puget Sound

Under guise of nonprofit caring for rescued horses, allegations of animal cruelty arose.

KCSO found all but one of the 108 allegations of excessive or unnecessary use of force were justified

The Office of Law Enforcement Oversight has released its annual 2018 report.

To spur investment, marijuana businesses want rules eased

Another group has proposed a low-interest loan program, to help women- and minority-owned startups.

They got the signatures for I-1000. They want to get paid.

Citizen Solutions wants $1.1 million it says it’s owed by backers of the affirmative action law.

Inslee passes up a chance to confront corporate ‘blackmail’

The governor skipped a meeting about tax breaks he said Boeing squeezed out of the state.

Muckleshoot Tribe breaks ground in Auburn on 18-story, 400-room, luxury hotel

When finished, it will be the largest of its kind in the state

Most Read