The recent failure of Tim Eyman's I-917 could probably have been foretold before last week. Probably even before the Secretary of State took in his signature petitions. If someone looked at the number of individual contributors to Eyman's campaigns, they would have seen a sharp drop since 2001.
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From a high of over 5,000 in 2001 with I-747 to a low this year of just over 700, Eyman's initiatives have seen less and less support from the kind of people who write checks.
There are a few reasons for this, the biggest of all would seem to be that the shine is off Tim with his supporters (or former supporters). The big drop from over 5,000 checks to half that came in 2002 after it became public that Eyman lied about not taking a salary.
I also think that his caustic message can only hold out for so many cycles before people get tired of hearing it. Not that they suddenly support progressive ideals, but that these sort of supporters don't tend to support ongoing political movements. The entire Libertarian Party conundrum.
Also, how many supporters do you think will really hang on simply with an email list and some very poorly written emails? That gets tired after awhile too.