In the midst of chaos and confusion in many parts of the world, we’re excited to be starting the 2020 Washington state legislative session full of optimism. Unlike in the other Washington, we have more progressive champions in Olympia than ever before who will work to strengthen our communities, combat climate change, and reduce the injustices inflicted by our criminal justice system.
Most importantly, we have a secret ingredient that Republicans and corporate lobbyists lack: grassroots power. As long as thousands of activists like you make your voice heard for progressive change, we can ensure Washington remains an example for the rest of the country.
Our legislative agenda was shaped by your responses to our member survey as well as conversations with partners and community leaders. Here are our top priorities for the 2020 legislative session:
1. Fighting Climate Change
- Fuse members agree that the number one issue we need to prioritize is fighting back against the climate crisis. We will continue to expand on our progress from last session by passing a Clean Fuel Standard, similar to those successfully implemented in Oregon, California, and British Columbia. A Clean Fuel Standard requires transportation fuels sold in Washington to emit less carbon pollution. Nearly half of our state’s greenhouse gas emissions come from transportation and this legislation will make a huge difference in cutting our carbon emissions as well as leading to more innovation of green technologies in our state.
2. Balancing Our Tax Code
- Washington’s upside-down tax code is the most regressive in the nation, and its impacts are most felt by our working families. This year, we are going to fully fund the Working Families Tax Credit by ending an unnecessary capital gains tax break to finally make the wealthy finally pay their share! The Working Families Tax Credit puts funds back into the pockets of those who need it most and brings them more financial stability to handle rent, groceries, and even dreaded medical emergencies and other expenses.
3. Improving Voting Justice
- It’s no secret that our criminal justice system disproportionately hurts communities of color, including preventing tens of thousands of Washingtonians from voting after completing a sentence. This year, we’re supporting legislation that would restore voting eligibility to people with an incarceration history who have served their time, re-entered society, and are under community supervision. In addition, the bill would eliminate the ability to revoke a person’s voting eligibility based on failing to pay legal fees or fines — no one should have to pay to vote.
We will also be working closely on other criminal justice reforms and immigration policy, including protecting immigrants and refugees by expanding Keep Washington Working to county courthouses around the state.
Our agenda this year is bold and proactive, but we need your help to make it a reality. Together we can build a greener, more equitable, and more just Washington that works for all of us. Will you urge your legislators to be bold and to support our progressive agenda for 2020?