On Wednesday, August 7th, the Secretary of State certified Referendum Measure 88 (R-88) for the November general election. “We set a record for number of signatures backing a referendum measure,” said Linda Yang, head of Washington Asians for Equality. “And this is the first time in Washington State’s history and in this country’s history that Asian Americans led the pack and sent a referendum measure to the ballot.”
“The other side has tried to portray this extraordinarily successful campaign as a group of Asian Americans worried about losing spots at UW. This is clearly about a much larger issue. This is about a basic fundamental American value: Individual rights for every person! Race has no place in American life or law,” Yang continued.
The campaign raised nearly $1 million dollar, mostly from individual donors. “Close to 2,000 people donated to this Referendum. This is a true grassroots campaign,” said Yang. “The other side is dishonest. They owed signature collectors $1.3 million dollar in pay and launched a new PAC to avoid paying down the debt.”
“Senator Bob Hasegawa arrogantly challenged us to collect 200,000 signatures to make a statement that the people actually wanted a referendum on I-1000, “said Yang. “Our campaign did even better than that. We obtained more than 200,000 signatures in this campaign. The voters of Washington State have spoken: We want to reconsider this vote of the legislature and put it in front of all the people.”
R-88 sponsors have already launched phase 2 campaign. A new campaign website, RejectI1000.org, is up and running.