Sawant loses some union support: The Martin Luther King County Labor Council voted Wednesday night to endorse Zachary DeWolf over incumbent Kshama Sawant, breaking from past elections when Sawant won their support. How did the socialist lose the support of a powerful labor group? Crosscut and KUOW have some ideas. So does Rich.
Police union president likes DeWolf: DeWolf won the labor council’s support partly because Kevin Stuckey, president of the Seattle Police Officers Guild (SPOG), personally advocated for endorsing the current school board member, according to an email obtained by Rich. (The SPOG president is one of the elected trustees on the labor council.)
DeWolf initially thanked Stuckey for the support, but then followed up today by sending out a press release with a subject line that reads, “DeWolf Rejects SPOG Support…” It appears DeWolf is attempting to hold onto union support without jeopardizing votes from people who may not be happy with the accountability-blocking SPOG union.
Candidates gilded in Amazon gold: The Chamber of Commerce PAC announced its preferred candidates this week, giving a nod to nine candidates across the seven races: Phil Tavel (District 1), Mark Solomon (District 2), Egan Orion (District 3), Alex Pedersen (District 4), Debora Juarez (District 5), Jay Fathi and Heidi Wills (District 6), and Jim Pugel and Michael George (District 7).
My colleague Nathalie Graham wrote about the surprises in the announcement, including the fact that District 2 bouncy house tycoon Ari Hoffman did not get the Chamber support, despite his apparent pleas. Defeating District 3 Councilmember Kshama Sawant is a huge priority for the chamber and it looks like they think Egan Orion has the best chance of pulling it off. Orion had previously told The Stranger that he was not “seeking nor will we accept an endorsement from CASE.” But, lo and behold, he not only went through the Chamber’s endorsement process but he’s also accepting their endorsement! Orion told me via email that after making the statement to us last month he had a change of heart:
“…I hastily created distinction for political purposes that simply does not reflect the inclusion and dialogue that have underscored my work solving real problems and organizing great, community driven events like PrideFest over my career.”
What is Tim Burgess actually trying to do? Crosscut columnist Lola E. Peters (yes, that Lola E. Peters) has an interesting editorial this week asking what exactly Tim Burgess and his Chamber-lite, People for Seattle PAC want to do when they say they want a more “moderate” council. This platitude has largely been accepted at face value by most of the reporters who have spoken with Burgess and his fellow PAC member, Taylor Hoang, but Peters digs deeper asking who exactly Burgess is trying to advocate for with his newfound wad of cash (at last count it’s up to $179,000). What does transparency and moderation mean? Reporters who get a chance to speak with Burgess (he didn’t return my call when I tried him after his PAC was revealed last month) would do well to ask Burgess some of Peters's questions.
Donations land Burgess in hot water: Burgess’s work on his People for Seattle PAC has the King County Council worried, according to a report from Patch.com. Burgess was set to get appointed to the board that oversees Mariner’s Stadium, but his nomination was delayed this week apparently because the council members realized Burgess had accepted $10,000 in donations to his People for Seattle PAC from two Seattle Mariners owners. The public board is supposed to oversee the county’s ownership of the stadium in which the Mariners play. Can Burgess be impartial when he’s taking the Mariner money and spending it on political races? The county council appears worried.