Along with Colorado, Washington was one of the first to legalize medicinal and recreational cannabis, was among the first thirty-six states to legalize same-sex marriage, doing so in 2012, and was one of only four U. states to have been providing legal abortions on request before the 1973 Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Similarly, Washington voters approved a 2008 referendum on legalization of physician-assisted suicide, and is currently only one of five states, along with Oregon, California, Colorado and Vermont, as well as the District of Columbia to have legalized the practice.The state is also one of eight in the country to have criminalized the sale, possession and transfer of bump stocks, with California, Florida, New Jersey, New York, Vermont, Maryland, and Massachusetts also having banned these devices.
Washington is one of the wealthiest and most liberally progressive states in the country.
From north to south, these major volcanoes are Mount Baker, Glacier Peak, Mount Rainier, Mount St. Eastern Washington – the part of the state east of the Cascades – has a relatively dry climate, in distinct contrast to the west side.
It includes large areas of semiarid steppe and a few truly arid deserts in the rain shadow of the Cascades; the Hanford reservation receives an average annual precipitation of 6 to 7 inches (150 to 180 mm).
The high mountains of the Cascade Range run north-south, bisecting the state.
In addition to Western Washington and Eastern Washington, residents call the two parts of the state the "West side" and "East side", "Wet side" and "Dry side", or "Timberland" and "Wheatland", the latter pair more commonly in the names of region-specific businesses and institutions.