Nunes/Primary Update/Things to Do

It’s all working out. Just remember: What you’re seeing and what you’re reading is not what’s happening.

– Donald Trump (7-24-2018)

The party told you to reject the evidence of your eyes and ears. It was their final, most essential command. 

George Orwell, 1984

Dear Group,

George Orwell’s dystopian novel was required reading when I was growing up. The quotes I posted above were ringing in my head as I stood in front of the Spokane Club on Monday. McMorris Rodgers was inside sharing the podium with her friend and supporter, Devin Nunes, raising money from sixty-one local Republicans gathered for a $250-500 luncheon, sixty-one private party attendees carefully shielded from prying eyes. 

McMorris Rodgers surely wishes most Eastern Washington voters to believe her when she and her spokesman say she “supports the Mueller investigation.” She wishes us to believe the words of her “positive disruptor,” Donald Trump, when he tells us not to believe what we see and hear. She must fervently wish that as she invites to her fundraiser the Congressman most responsible for the Republican effort to undermine and discredit the Mueller investigation. Believe what I say, “I support,”, not what you see. Her actions speak louder than her words. 

The Progress of the Primaries

Primary election ballot turn-ins are actually quite a lot ahead of 2014 (the last midterm primary), contrary to Jim Camden’s depressing article in the Spokesman last Sunday, “Primary Voter Turnout Lagging.” Updated as of Monday evening (according to the Spokane County Ballot Return Statistics (PDF) accessed from this webpage) 11,754 (52,249 minus 40,495) more ballots have come in than during the comparable period in the 2014 midterm primaries. The change in percent return of total ballots sent out is less impressive, 16.67% in 2018 vs. 14.35% in 2014 (there are about 30,000 more registered voters now than in 2014), but the trend is clear: More people are voting. (See chart below.)

What you can do:

1) You can help encourage voting by signing up for a Spokane tradition: sign waving on arterials and freeway bridges in the cool of the morning as people drive by. From Eileen Marin, fellow Indivisible:

URGENT:  We need all volunteers who are available to put on t-shirts, grab your yard signs, coffee, and a friend and go to your nearest arterial intersection at 7 30 (earlier if you’re so inclined) and proudly hold your sign and wave. You’ll be delighted by the thumbs-up, horn-honking response that you will get. It’s important to remind people to vote and to visually show them our solidarity, our presence as a community of people who believe we can make a change.  Please text 509 939 9108 with your name and the location where you stood so that we can get organized for Nov.  (Evening is also good…folks going home to find their ballot.)Thanks to all of you.

2) This increase in turnout isn’t happening by accident. Many of us volunteers have been knocking on doors, talking with registered voters, and encouraging them to make the effort to cast their ballot. You can help with that too, by signing up with and joining us for GOTV (Get Out the Vote) canvassing. (See the CANVASSING LINKS in the box below.) It is rewarding and enlightening experience to connect with fellow citizens. 

3) Write letters to the editor to your local newspaper. They don’t have to be erudite (just look at some of what gets printed from the other side). I’m told they are printed in proportion to the numbers received, so even if you don’t get yours printed the submission helps get the word out. For the Spokesman the limit is 200 words. You can send it by email to . Include your name (with any appropriate letters behind it), a daytime phone number and your address (number and street address are not published). 

4) Call ten friends you think might be sympathetic. Have a chat. Emphasize the importance you feel about voting in the Primary this time.

Keep to the high ground,


P.S. Part of need for high ballot turn-in is that high numbers attract money from state, local, and even national political entities. More likelihood of winning generates more likelihood of winning. That is just the way it is.

I used data published on the Spokane County Elections website and exercised my arithmetic skills to come up with comparable periods of time. Unless Mr. Camden had access to a different data set for his Sunday article, there was a glitch in his arithmetic for the pre-weekend results and therefor also a glitch in the inference he drew from the data. Arithmetic can be a problem even when you’re not in a hurry and under a deadline. Feel free to check mine.