In what could become a landmark decision for grassroots involvement over elite, dictatorial power, the State of Washington Court of Appeals, Div. I today overturned a King County liberal ruling that it was okay for Lori Sotelo and her bylaws to violate Washington Law (RCW 29A.80.061). The ruling comprises a rebuke to longtime GOP attorney John White.
The duty, under the law, of the King County chair to call legislative district meetings for the purpose of nominating and electing district chairs has been hotly debated in King County Republican Party organization meetings for years and each time attorney John White, bylaws author for the King County Liberal Republican Establishment, has soothed the precinct committee officers with the assurance that the question had been legally settled: the county bylaws were “not in violation of law”… and please would they just not pay attention to the rabble rousers who only want to disrupt the smooth working of the party and overturn the perfectly reasonable and legal KCGOP by laws.
ON March 5, 2015, the Reagan Wing was present in court as White, attorney of record for the King County Republican Central Committee, represented the establishment’s motion to bar PCO (36LD) Andrew Pilloud a writ of mandamus ordering Lori Sotelo to immediately call elected PCOs to individual legislative district meetings (all 17 of them) to elect their own legislative district chairs, rather than appoint them, without recourse, subject to PCO ratification. The rule, written (by White) into County Party bylaws, has been only the first line of defense of Sotelo’s autocratic practice. (The Second is violating her own rules.) IN COURT White argued (falsely) that the GOP had already litigated the question TWICE and that the issue had been settled by the 1967 decision. The 1967 decision, in point of fact, was about an entirely different law!! But King County Superior Court Judge Mariane Spearman, obviously ignorant of, and dismissive of actual law, deferred to White’s confident and soothing prevarication. Liberal King County Judges have a history of favoring Liberal King County Republican leaders and Spearman, indeed, barred Pilloud by collateral estoppel from “relitigating” the question. This is the tyranny that has slowly overtaken American Justice.
Today’s ruling (provisionally) overturns that atrocity.
Writing for the majority, today, Justice Ann Schindler, said that John White’s assertion, that provisions of RCW 29A.80.061 are not materially different from [former] RCW 29.42.070 (ruled unconstitutional by the Superior Court
of Washington in 1967) WAS WRONG.
Monday’s ruling by the Court of Appeals is a groundbreaking decision in this case. They’ve tossed out the 1967 case cited at the previous organization meeting and placed the burden on the KCRCC to prove the current law unconstitutional. This will be difficult in light of the 1979 US Supreme Court ruling Marchioro v. Chaney. There is unlikely to be a final ruling by the organization meeting this December, but this decision casts a serious doubt on the advice being put forth by the current rules committee.
There are still hurdles to overcome, however, in Andrew Pilloud’s ongoing, solitary campaign to compel the Sotelo regime to obey Washington Law.
The appeals decision can still be appealed to the Supreme Court for 30 days. If not appealed, on April 13 it becomes a mandate to the Superior Court. The Superior Court rules say they should schedule a trial for no fewer than 22 weeks out, so mid-September is the earliest this will move forward.