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State Motorcycle Dealers Association v. The State of Washington

763 P.2d 442, 111 Wash. 2d 667 (1988)

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State Motorcycle Dealers Association v. The State of Washington

Washington Supreme Court

763 P.2d 442, 111 Wash. 2d 667 (1988)

Facts

The sixty-second amendment to the Washington State constitution explains the scope of the governor’s veto power. Although the governor has the power to veto partial sections of appropriations bills, the governor may not partially veto less than an entire section of a nonappropriation bill. In 1985 the state legislature passed the Motorcycle Dealers’ Franchise Act (the act), a nonappropriation bill that regulated relationships between motorcycle manufacturers and motorcycle dealers. Governor Booth Gardner (defendant) vetoed parts of sections of the act. The legislature did not override Gardner’s partial vetoes. The State Motorcycle Dealers Association (the association) (plaintiff) filed a lawsuit in state court against Gardner and the state of Washington (defendant), arguing that Gardner’s partial vetoes were unconstitutional. The trial court upheld some of the partial vetoes and struck down other partial vetoes as invalid. In making its decision, the trial court applied a separate-subject test, upholding a partial veto if the vetoed portion contained separate and distinct subject matter from the rest of the section. Washington appealed the judgment as applied to the invalidated partial vetoes, and the association appealed the judgment as to the upheld partial vetoes.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Andersen, J.)

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