Despite clear evidence to the contrary, former Managing Assistant AG and current Thurston County Superior Court Judge, Chris Lanese, hastily sided with the Secretary of State, and granted the SoS’s Motion for Summary Judgment, dismissed the case questioning I-1000 validity.
“This is clearly a political move and we have filed an appeal to the State Supreme Court.” Said Mr. Kan Qiu, the lead plaintiff in the lawsuit challenging I-1000’s validity. “The court sent us the Order Granting Summary Judgement less than 3 hours after the SoS filed the reply to our opposition; and Judge Lanese signed the Order the day before the SoS even replied! It appears that all of this has been hastily decided and maybe predetermined.”
More than 700 people have donated in support of the lawsuit, and many are furious with what seems to be a rapid attempt to legitimize an initiative infested with violations of laws that govern the initiative process. The SoS did not carry out an “unrestricted random sample” as required by WAC 434-379-010(1). She also engaged in arbitrary and capricious decision making about how to proceed when problems were found in the signature population during sample review. The process used was convoluted by any objective observation.
“RCW 29A.72.230 grants any citizen dissatisfied with the SoS’s determination the right to challenge it in the Superior Court. The SoS did not validate every I-1000 signature. They certified apples based on orange samples. To say that Judge Lanese’s decision has caused long-term damage to the initiative process is not an overstatement. “Mr. Qiu said. “Judge Lanese just removed standards from the code, and set a precedent to deny a citizen’s right to challenge the SoS’s certification decision. People should be outraged.”
People have also filed complaints to the State of Washington Commission on Judicial Conduct.