Gossip About Nasty Gays, Filthy Beggars, and Big Bird
• "Who the hell reads The Stranger?" Marilyn McKenna posted to Facebook last week in response to something or other. Her husband, Rob McKenna, is the Republican candidate for governor.
• Seattle's Convention and Visitors Bureau has had enough with beggars who sully downtown streets. Along with the some of the wealthiest downtown businesses, including Clise Properties and the Four Seasons Hotel, the group began sending photos of the poor to elected officials at City Hall last week, saying that an "unsafe and unsavory street scene" has made Seattle a "perfect picture of a third world country." Photos include two people taking turns using the same wheelchair in separate shifts for panhandling, an alleged drug deal, and a littered sidewalk. The group is advocating, among other things, new laws for people sitting on garbage cans, displaying aggressive behavior, and "placing belongings on the sidewalk." Visitors bureau president Tom Norwalk explains that panhandlers "can raise $30,000 to $40,000 a year and not pay taxes—it's one part of the street scene we'd like to see cleaned up."
• "I'm very concerned that this thing is going to lose," Washington's premier gay state senator, Ed Murray, said last week about gay-marriage-legalizing Referendum 74. "I'm not seeing the level of movement in the polls that we should see." Two recent polls show R-74 narrowly ahead, but it's picked up only one to six points since summer despite a deluge of pro-gay-marriage ads.
• Last Friday night, Patrick Plumb, the adorably named mayor of tiny northern Washington town Tonasket, went on a bizarre Twitter rant about "libtards" and the "Soviet" government program that is PBS. When contacted by The Stranger about his rant, Mayor Plumb claimed his account had been "played with" by someone else. The Stranger then asked Mayor Plumb if his account was being "played with" two days before, when he was also ranting about "libtards" and speculating on what a cooked Big Bird might taste like. Plumb confirmed ownership of the earlier tweets and deleted his Twitter account.
• The phrase "King County Judge Position 42" doesn't normally get people all exercised. But people are exercised about the voters' guide statement that candidate Sue Parisien is using in her race for that spot on the local bench. Parisien's statement, which will soon be mailed to all voters, includes praise from Governor Chris Gregoire and Attorney General Rob McKenna. The problem is, it's not recent praise. Gregoire's praise comes from a generic 2005 recommendation letter she wrote for Parisien, and she's asked Parisien to stop implying that she has the governor's support. "It implied an endorsement that doesn't exist," says Gregoire spokeswoman Kelly Evans. (McKenna's office says he doesn't mind Parisien using his old statement, which is from a 2007 recommendation letter.)
• HOLY FUCKING CRAP! The Stranger is hosting a free vice-presidential debate party on Thursday, October 11, at 6 p.m. It's at Havana (1010 E Pike St). Doors at 5 p.m.