Updated Friday, February 22, 2013 at 01:31 PM
OLYMPIA — The chairman of the state Republican Party on Thursday called on Tim Eyman to apologize to Democratic Gov. Jay Inslee for calling him a “lying whore” in an email.
“There is no question that’s beyond the pale and is uncalled for. No matter what the issue is, it’s uncalled for, and I would condemn such a thing,” GOP Chairman Kirby Wilbur said.
“You may say I disagree, or he lied and point that out. But you don’t call him a lying whore,” he added. “He should apologize, no question.”
Eyman is known for challenging government officials and makes his living sponsoring initiatives such as a measure repeatedly agreed to by voters that requires a two-thirds vote of the Legislature, or voter approval, to increase taxes.
In an email to supporters and the media Thursday, Eyman said in part: “Candidate Inslee repeatedly promised to veto any tax increase. He said no way to higher transportation taxes in 2013. Inslee said he’d grow jobs to generate more tax revenue. What a lying whore he turned out to be. In recent weeks, he’s made it clear he’ll sign any tax increase the Legislature unilaterally imposes.”
David Postman, Inslee’s spokesman, said, “We have no comment on Tim Eyman.”
While running against GOP gubernatorial candidate Rob McKenna last year, Inslee said, “I would veto anything that heads the wrong direction and the wrong direction is new taxes in the state of Washington.”
However, Inslee never ruled out increasing taxes for transportation and did say he supports sending a tax measure to the ballot to raise money for transportation.
He also has opposed new taxes, although he’s been open to extending existing taxes.
Eyman, reached for comment, said he stuck by his email.
“Kirby Wilbur, thanks for the advice, but no he (Inslee) doesn’t deserve an apology,” Eyman said. “He deserves to keep his word and as promised to not raise taxes, to veto any taxes, and if there are going to be any taxes they should go on the ballot.”
Eyman’s email indicated it was from him, Jack Fagan and Mike Fagan. All three are listed as officers in the Voters Want More Choices political-action committee that sponsored Initiative 1185 last year. The measure, approved by voters, reaffirmed the two-thirds requirement for the Legislature to approve taxes.
Mike Fagan is a Spokane City Council member. He did not immediately respond to requests for an interview. Eyman, however, sent an email he said was from Fagan, indicating Fagan stood by the email as well.
Fagan’s email cited a dictionary definition of a whore as “a person considered as having compromised principles for personal gain.”
It went on to say: “In this case, as a principal of Voters Want More Choices I do stand by the quote. Our intent in using the term was two fold; 1. The word “whore” was used in the correct context per the definition above, and 2. the email generated interest by those who received it.”
Fagan added that “while I would tend to agree that a statement like that shouldn’t come from a city councilman, it didn’t. It came from the principals of a political action committee whom on their own time, using their own resources sent an email to convey information and express frustration towards another politician who has gained tremendously through lies.”
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Gov. Jay Inslee