Okay, what the hell happened last night in Iowa: Look, it's confusing, but basically Bernie and Buttigieg currently split the lead and Warren is in third. "Although Pete Buttigieg leads the caucus results, Bernie Sanders is leading the popular vote count, at 28,220 over Buttigieg’s 27,030," writes The Guardian. "Elizabeth Warren collected 22,254 votes and Joe Biden has 14,176, with 62% of precincts reporting." It's important to remember that 62% is not 100%. The AP won't call the state for anyone until more precincts report. It's unclear when the full results will be released.
And so Buttigieg, who wants to replace the Electoral College with a popular vote, ran the most effective campaign in Iowa to win its equivalent of the Electoral College: The SDEs that under-represent urban precincts.
— Dave Weigel (@daveweigel) February 4, 2020
Just watched 62% of the 1986 World Series, and clearly the Red Sox won the whole thing that year.
— David Sirota (@davidsirota) February 5, 2020
Meanwhile, Washington state sure is glad to have gotten rid of its caucuses: “As someone who helped run the WA caucus in 2016, I’m so [expletive] glad we are not doing that again this year,” a campaign spokesman for Gov. Inslee told the Seattle Times. “Tonight sure makes our state’s decision to abandon caucuses and use a presidential primary in a few weeks look brilliant!" tweeted Washington State Sen. Marko Liias.
Who's ready for this little chill talk from our president? The State of the Union is starting right now. Watch it here:
Do you notice anyone missing? AOC and Ayanna Pressley are boycotting tonight's State of the Union.
After much deliberation, I have decided that I will not use my presence at a state ceremony to normalize Trump’s lawless conduct & subversion of the Constitution.
None of this is normal, and I will not legitimize it.
Consequently, I will not be attending the State of the Union.
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) February 4, 2020
The State of the Union is hurting because of the occupant of the White House, who consistently demonstrates contempt for the American people, contempt for Congress & contempt for our constitution. I cannot in good conscience attend tonight's sham #SOTU → https://t.co/DTwG3Y7dK3 pic.twitter.com/Hres8eAFkK
— Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley (@RepPressley) February 4, 2020
Wheeeeeeeee Trump's approval rating is the highest it's ever been, according to this new Gallup poll. "The new poll finds 50% of Americans disapproving of Trump, leaving just 1% expressing no opinion. The average percentage not having an opinion on Trump has been 5% throughout his presidency."
Is all of this stressing you out? Here, look at this herd of elk just chilling on the beach.
I-90 is closed in two directions: After a semi-truck jackknifed across three lanes of traffic. Yikes.
SPOG has a new president: The Seattle Police Officer’s Guild has elected Mike Solan as their new president, replacing Kevin Stuckey. Judging from his campaign video, he seems like a real nice guy. “I will fundamentally change the activist narrative,” he says, before the video cuts to an RT shot of cops shooting BLM activists with some kind of blast ball gun.
Councilmember Herbold pays $500 because she violated city code when she texted Police Chief Carmen Best "about an RV that she thought was parked in front of her house as part of a political stunt," reports the Seattle Times. Herbold paid the fine and acknowledged that she violated "a rule that bars city employees from using their official position for their private benefit." The ethics complaint was sent in by Ari Hoffman, who complained to the Times that “this is what happens when a government fails," although Herbold agreeing to pay a fine and acknowledging a rule violation seems to be what happens when government succeeds?
Some housekeeping: The Stranger is moving! Well, Stranger World Headquarters is moving. Everything else is staying the same, basically. We'll be moving near Uwajimaya starting in June. Lester Black, Laurie Saito, and Tim Keck discuss the move here.
Aw, thanks, Capitol Hill Seattle Blog: You called us "a Seattle legend." But yes, 11th Ave will soon have a WeWork but no Stranger. As a resident of Capitol Hill, I think that's pretty bleak. Just call Capitol Hill "South Lake Union East" at this point. Or "Cloud City East," as I like Cloud City better than South Lake Union.
Some other news that's already been covered on Slog today:
Washington CEO says proposed payroll tax would cost less than a holiday party: "The most compelling supportive testimony" for the payroll tax proposal "came from Dan Price, founder and CEO of Gravity Payments," writes Rich Smith. "He said the bill would cost him money, but it would be less than a 'Throwback to the '90s' holiday party they recently threw."
Flavored e-cigarettes could be allowed in Washington under new proposal: "Inslee’s vape ban has been criticized—including extensively by this newspaper—for inadvertently creating a black market for these flavored nicotine products. Inslee himself has admitted that flavorings were never believed to be causing the lung injury," writes Lester Black. "It’s not flavors, but rather additives found in black market vapes that are getting people sick and killing them."
Cinerama lays off most of its staff as it closes for surprise renovations: "Cinerama employees told The Stranger that a majority of them were laid off Tuesday without notice," writes Nathalie Graham. "Nearly 30 employees were gathered for a 10 a.m. meeting at the theater and were told to pack their things, grab their exit paperwork, and leave the building, according to employees."