Double Dipping Doug – $161K Federal + $45K+ State

Hi Everyone – Our double dipping friend is back in the news. As of yesterday he continues to deny knowing his $161,000 federal salary! The pay stub is attached below and marked 2/28/17. I’ve never made so much money that I don’t notice huge taxpayer paychecks. What is he hiding? Maybe the fact that his position is not really temporary? He’s never given proof. Help us create a Twitter Blitz that “informs” our clueless Senator of his double dipping taxpayer income. Have you ever missed a $6,000 taxpayer deposit?

Sample Twitter Posts
Hey @wheresdoug42 thought you needed help finding your double dipping salary ahh we have your pay stub here’s a copy

Help RT so @Doug_Ericksen can learn his double dipping federal salary of $161K + $45K from WA ST #waleg

Here are two articles Crosscut and a highly critical Seattle PI

Ericksen making $2,000 per week in DC

Last night the investigative news organization ProPublica found out from a Freedom of Information Request that Senator Ericksen is making roughly $2000 per week or an annual salary of over $125,000 in DC. That is on top of the $46,000 +$120 per diem he is drawing from Washington State. We have requested this salary information for months and Ericksen has always claimed he did not know it. The truth is that he was hiding his salary. He did not want to voters to know the extent of his double dipping income, while doing far less than what is expected.  The article from the Bellingham Herald is linked here.

Campaign reflection, next steps and small funding request

Dear Doug Ericksen Accountability Supporters – I want to thank you again for all your effort and assistance during this campaign. We did not get the decision we were hoping for in court yesterday, but we are undeterred. See press release here. It was ultimately unsuccessful to argue that Ericksen did not meet a minimum standard for attendance, work, presence or responsiveness. Since there are no minimum standards in the state constitution, you can essentially do nothing and still get paid. Voters must wait until a regular election to have their say (which we will!). The second challenge with our petition was that we provided important evidence that the court was unwilling to consider. While it is common practice to amend civil hearing charges based on new evidence, this was not allowed in the highly rare recall petition setting. We provided important evidence about Ericksen’s misuse of public per diem funds when not in the state and Ericksen even had to admit he inappropriately took this money. However, his lawyer objected to the new evidence and modified charges. The judge determined that this evidence could not be considered. The judge did acknowledge that this evidence could trigger a subsequent recall petition, leaving the door wide open for such future action. We will continue advocating for accountable representation and fiscal responsibility from our lawmakers. Next steps include a new Legislative Ethics Board complaint and working for new legislation around minimum work guidelines. We hope to see you tomorrow at the Town Hall meeting

Finally: we have incurred some modest ($350) expenses from our campaign for petition filing, printing and licensing. If you can help offset this money that we’ve paid out of pocket, it would be greatly appreciated. Please click here to make a small donation. 

42nd District Citizens Undaunted by Recall Decision

March 2, 2017

42nd District Citizens Undaunted by Recall Decision

Bellingham, WA.

The citizen-led recall of Washington State Senator Doug Ericksen, D-42, was dismissed in court this morning with a finding of “insufficient grounds”.  In her decision, Whatcom Superior Court Judge Raquel Montoya-Lewis confirmed that there is no standard expectation of service against which Washington State senators can be judged.  Senators are not required to do anything, and therefore cannot fail to meet the standard.

“The performance of Sen. Ericksen in his duties as senator has to mean something,” Montoya-Lewis said. “But there’s no standard that’s laid out in the statutes. There’s no description. There’s no case law that indicates what ‘discharge of his duties under his oath of office’ means.”

Petitioners were disappointed to learn that the remedy of recall is not available when a senator so clearly and intentionally neglects the business of the senate and the work of representing the people of his district.

“It is astonishing to learn that our state senator can just decide not to do his job and there is literally no remedy available to us until he is up for re-election.  In my mind, showing up to work is a bi-partisan value” said Elizabeth Hartsoch of Riveters Collective.  “Finding sponsors for legislation to close this loophole is a clear path forward for us.  As is identifying a responsive and collaborative leader willing to take Senator Ericksen’s seat in the next election”.

Stephen Gockley, counsel for the petitioners, introduced evidence showing that in addition to his extensive record of meeting absences, Senator Ericksen has inappropriately claimed per diem payments of $120/day on days when he was demonstrably not working on senate business in any way.  He also argued that while occasional absences from meetings or votes are normal for senators, it is unprecedented for a senator to acknowledge a complete disengagement from senate business by declining per diem on so many days.  A timeline of Senator Ericksen’s 2017 legislative session attendance and per diem claims is available on the Riveters Collective website.

“I’m proud of this citizen led effort and the amazing response we’ve had from constituents. Nearly 3,000 people have signed petitions, provided evidence, made calls and participated in this recall effort” said Michael Shepard. “We will continue to be engaged, seeking accountability and effective representation for the 42nd district.”

Petitioners intend to continue holding Senator Ericksen accountable, beginning with attendance at his town hall meeting on Saturday.