Stepping up to a microphone Thursday, anti-tax activist Tim Eyman said he plans to run for governor in 2020.
Eyman made the announcement during a Sound Transit board meeting before getting his microphone cut over a rule against campaign speeches during public comment.
A professional initiative filer, Eyman, 53, has had a year of ups and downs. A Thurston County judge ruled in September that Eyman must disclose the source of almost $800,000 in contributions he’s taken in since 2012.
That ruling stems from a nearly five-year-old investigation alleging that Eyman laundered campaign donations through a web of political committees, businesses and kickbacks to enrich himself.
This summer, Eyman reached a settlement with the city of Lacey on charges that he stole a $70 rolling chair from an Office Depot.
But Eyman got a big win earlier this month, when voters approved I-976, his car-tab reduction initiative. That prompted Seattle and other government agencies to file a lawsuit contending I-976 violates the state constitution.
In a Facebook post Thursday about his nascent campaign, Eyman wrote, “I’m so sick of Seattle making all decisions.”
“I want to be the Governor for everyone who’s sick and tired of this crap,” he added.
If he indeed runs, Eyman would join a handful of others challenging Gov. Jay Inslee. A Democrat, Inslee decided to seek a rare third term this summer after dropping his bid for president.
Candidates for governor don’t formally file until May. But candidates can file now with the state Public Disclosure Commission to raise money for their campaigns.
So far, a handful of Republicans have announced bids, including Sen. Phil Fortunato, of Auburn; Loren Culp, police chief of the town of Republic; and Joshua Freed, a real-estate developer and former mayor of Bothell.
Former Republican U.S. Rep. Dave Reichert in September announced he wouldn’t challenge Inslee.
Staff reporter Mike Lindblom contributed to this report.