IF POLITICAL TRENDS move from West to East, there's reason for hope in an anti-tax effort gathering momentum in Washington state.

A citizens' group has collected 428,000 signatures on petitions for a ballot proposal to roll back new state taxes - 250,000 more signatures than required by state law.In addition to repealing about $1 billion in taxes and fees, the ballot initiative would require a 60 percent "super-majority" in both houses of the legislature for any future tax hikes.

The voters who signed those petitions evidently were unswayed by the usual dire warnings of reductions in public services if their taxes are cut. That grass-roots judgment provides a useful reference point for Congress when it takes up President Clinton's budget plan.

For the full story: Log In, Register for Free or Subscribe