The Sunday Observer: Hyperbole, hustles and a flood of $$$ ahead of fundraising freeze
Donors bombarded with pitches, pols showered with checks
This weekend marked the beginning of the annual “freeze” on political donations to incumbent state officials. The law forbids contributions 30 days before the Legislature’s convenes until the final gavel falls in March. The idea is to avoid those awkward moments when powerful donors offer politicians checks too close to crucial votes.
The practical effect of this rule is a blizzard of solicitations and a torrent of money in the weeks leading up to the freeze.
Here’s why you should care about this: The weeks before the freeze are traditionally a time for major players in Olympia — unions, corporations, trade associations, environmental groups, etc. — to demonstrate seriousness and show fealty with their checkbooks.
We’ll get to the torrent in a bit. First the blizzard: Anyone who ever wrote a political check in Washington, or merely expressed interest in a candidate or political issue, likely got between one and a zillion of these asks recently.
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