So I guess Rich's strategy to the claim the recall campaign is operating in bad faith is to print up a bunch of bad faith arguments of his own? I know The Stranger is hardly an objective news source when it comes to their biggest advertising cash cow but this reads more like a hit piece or blatant propaganda than an editorial.

The reasons that the Supreme Court used to certify the recall are not alleged. They ALL happened. The only question is whether voters feel they are sufficient to warrant a recall. Councilmember Sawant has now admitted she violated ethics laws and used public resources to promote her Tax Amazon initiative. She has never disputed letting protestors into City Hall in violation of the governor's public health mandates and while she didn't lead the march to Durkan's residence the court found sufficient cause that she disclosed the confidential address of Mayor Durkan to the protestors.

I agree the election rehashing is not helpful and it would be nice if we could focus on addressing the undisputed malfeasance of Councilmember Sawant however sometimes the only way you can take down a foe who lives in the muck is to get dirty yourself. Egan Orion tried to run an issue based campaign while Sawant continually demonized him with ad hominem attacks at every opportunity and he lost. So I understand why the recall campaign is pushing back on her bullshit early and often to counter the narrative she is going to paint in the press. The Sawant playbook is as predictable as it is tiresome. Label your opponent a tool of the right wing, a crony of business or some other bogeyman. Attack, attack, attack and do everything but address the actual issues. Maybe sprinkle in some bullshit legislation that has no hope of going anywhere like rent control (fun fact - the last time Sawant introduced rent control was in Aug 2019 right before the election and then the bill never even received a hearing in her committee once the election was over).

For what it's worth the most telling thing to me from all this is the complete lack of accountability from Sawant. Rather than take responsibility for her actions she continues to deny any wrongdoing, blame other people like the "right wing" Supreme Court (yeah the same one that decriminalized all drug possession a month ago) and label anyone that takes issues with her actions as some MAGA hat wearing Trumper. It's so laughable it's pathetic even for her. As Rich noted the Recall campaign has way more support than the support campaign in D3 and over 60% of Sawants support is from out of state. Does anyone honestly believe if she survives this she will have learned anything? Wouldn't it be more likely she will just feel emboldened to act with even more impunity? Ultimately that will be for the voters of District 3 to decide. There will no doubt be a lot of noise between now and the election (I have no doubt the recall supporters will get their 10k signatures). The one thing that is for sure is if she is replaced it won't be by some right wing or even moderately liberal candidate. Keep in mind he last time the council filled a vacant seat they chose Kirsten Harris-Talley, hardly a moderate. For my part, I hope the voters send a message that transparency and accountability in government are still important.



Correct me if I'm wrong, but admitting to the charge of violating the city ethics code and paying a fine sounds a lot like "tak(ing) responsibility" to me.


@2 Or sorry she got caught and had to admit responsibility under duress.

She overplayed her hand in an adversarial system, leaving herself open to this.


@2 Sawant spent over a year contending the "Tax Amazon" allegations were factually and legally insufficient. She fought this issue in both the courts and the Seattle Ethics and Elections Commission.

Only after exhausting all efforts to avoid responsibility did Sawant finally admit the violations.


Kshama why have you no
staffer on this Schlog?

Frame it for us



So, basically she did what anyone else who thinks they didn't do something wrong does: they pursue their legal options until some sort of final determination is made, and if it eventually goes against them they suck it up and take the hit. But, because she's who she is, the collective opinion of our resident troll brigade brands her a hypocrite or liar or whatever for engaging in a process that is every citizen's legal right, does that about cover it?


What @1 says.


Everyone I know says Vote Against The Recall and then decide who you want to be in her seat during the Primary (which is the real election in Seattle).



Even if I grant that she did the 3 things she is accused of, this is completely petty, and not worth recalling her for. This is as ridiculous as impeaching Bill Clinton over a blow job. Arguably unethical, but hardly merits removal from office. Did she campaign against Biden? So what? She's a socialist. Biden is about as centrist as any current Democrat can be. They are definitely not in the same political lane. I'm fine with Biden, but I would have been happier with a candidate several steps to the left of him. I have no problem with her campaigning against him. Still doesn't merit a recall.

I would absolutely vote against her recall if it manages to make it to the ballot. If her opponents want to make something out of her trivial violations come the next legitimate election cycle, I invite them to do so. I'm not a huge Sawant fan, and would happily vote for someone better. But I will absolutely not vote to recall her over this negligible bullshit. It is a transparent attempt by RWNJs to divide progressives.


@2/9 She literally just sent a flyer in the mail over the weekend rebuking all the charges against her yet again including the one over the improper use of city resources. Not only is she a liar her campaign stuff is not in the loop on what she is doing.

Can you point me to the statement she issued as part of the settlement where she admits she violated the city ethics code (intentionally or unintentionally), acknowledges she was wrong to do so and states she will do better in the future? Maybe it got lost in the shuffle of this release at 5pm on a Friday where news stories go to die. Doesn't that bug you? How hard would it be for her to issue the standard bullshit political apology and be like "you know I was very passionate about this issue and in my fervor I unknowlingly violated some ethics codes. I've paid the fine and I'll make sure it doesn't happen again". She can't even to do that though because in her mind she did nothing wrong. This is all just some big conspiracy against her and that is the scariest part of all this. When you are dealing with someone who feels the weight of righteousness is on their side and the regular rules don't apply to them that is truly the road to fascism and that should concern you. Believe it or don't.

p.s. as part of ongoing inquiry into the missing Durkan emails it came out today that Sawant's staff doesn't even use city accounts. They all use gmail accounts so any public records requests can only be provided by her staff and SA directly. Can you believe that? There is no record of her communication on any city servers. Nothing shady there though. I'm suer Rich will be publishing a post about that later this week. lol.


I'm no fan of Sawant. I probably would have voted against her in every election. But the reasons for her recall seem about as petty as the reasons The Stranger gave for voting for her when she was a challenger. It is all bullshit. I'm sorry, but recalls shouldn't be about disliking someone. Recalls should be about major corruption. I just don't see it.

The really sad part -- and this so typical for a podunk town like Seattle, with its podunk "alternative" newspaper -- is that it all gets framed in such bullshit. That's what @1 gets right. Fans of Sawant treat her like the second coming of Jane Addams, when in reality she is nothing more than a second rate hack who has the ear of second rate writers working for a second rate newspaper desperately trying to relive its glory days.


I don't think it's fair to say Sawant hates Democrats. I think she hates everyone.


Some analysis of that protest at the mayor’s home would be helpful.


I think it's fair to say the GQP hates Sawant and the Mayor, but are still 100 percent Evil.


The blimpy-wimpy, gluten-free, ketoo-metoo, lactose-intolerant Seattle Democratic Machine needs a progressive socialist firebrand like Sawant to exhort socially conscientious people to freely congregate and express their desire to challenge the harebrained corporatism of bun-shavers like Durkan, Seattle’s iteration of Mme. Hillary, who belongs in the gorilla cage at Woodland Park Zoo with Féfé and Mongo.

If anything the Seattle left, even Gumbys and Pokeys who voted for Biden, although they should have voted for Colonel Sanders, should appreciate the necessity of having Sawant stir the pot and offer bonafide socialist solutions like defunding law-enforcement and refunding social services to assist the downtrodden and homeless folks.

This contrived, sophistic mailer from the green-orange howler-monkey Trump advocates and misguided, bi-curious Pat Boone Demoquaks, who hangout at the Greenlake men’s restroom, should be used to light a fire under the ass of Lady Seattle’s Left and get Sawant, a genuine progressive who thinks, feels and cares, elected Mayor.

Speaking of ethical and procedural violations, those involved in this witch-hunt to malign Councilmember Sawant should be dragged behind the barn, administered Prairie Justice and spritzed with Absorbine Jr. ®


So, CM Sawant repeatedly said she hadn't abused her office by using public money to support her (Blame) Amazon Tax initiative. The Stranger repeatedly carried water for her on this point, obediently swallowing and regurgitating all of her denials, and now she's just admitted to having done it anyway. Ouch! No wonder RIch and The Stranger are angry, but somehow they continue displacing their (understandable) rage from her, and onto any messenger who dares point how CM Sawant took their loyalty and punked them for it. Anger in this situation is very healthy and justifiable, but denying the source of it is neither. CM Sawant's critics were telling the truth, CM Sawant was not, and no amount of savage rhetoric against the former will help Rich and The Stranger process their very real feelings of hurt and betrayal caused by the latter; in fact, such continued denial will just make things worse for them.

It appears their only route out of this mess is to have the voters who live nearest to The Stranger's office remove the source. For the health and sanity of Rich and The Stranger, I hope those voters make the wise and healthy choice.


"Has she worked against Democrats for years? Absolutely. But her relentless skepticism of the Democratic party and its operatives remains one of her strongest assets given that party's near-total control of Seattle, King County, and the state."
And the Left eats its own. Popcorn is almost ready!


What @1 and @10 said. I only wish I could vote in the recall instead of just donating to it.

This all stems from moving the SSC, which far from more representation as promised, has led to complete dysfunction. I'd love to see a petition drive to go back to an all at large council.


Sawant is on her way out. She’s a repeat record. “They’re evil, I’m good”. Sounds like a church. Her story is to vilify “someone” with no real meat to her argument. I signed to remove. We deserve better.


Oh, and I throw up every time she says “solidarity”. Watch. It’s like every 10th word.


@2, @7,@9: We should note that CM Sawant might still be fighting the Seattle Ethics & Elections Commission, but she herself precluded that option. Once she appealed the recall petition to our state's Supreme Court and lost decisively, the SEEC really could not let it go, and she now had a Supreme Court ruling in her disfavor. The only reason she finally admitted wrongdoing was that the recall petitioners, with her own help (!), forced her into doing so. She shouldn't get any credit for admitting guilt, when the only reason she did so resulted directly from her tenacious fight to avoid it.


Who cares about Sawant, the council as a whole killing this city. They don’t understand they represent everybody. Sawant just dropped another anti rental housing bill. The only reason we keep the few rentals we have in Seattle is the council keeps driving housing prices up as they chase the independent rental property owners.


@19: Nice to see you cranking up the personal attacks and hate rhetoric. Such verbal abuses are a very reliable barometer of how scared CM Sawant's supporters have become. Nicely validating @1's prediction, you "label anyone that takes issues with her actions as some MAGA hat wearing Trumper." In fact, it was CM Sawant's actions which were straight from the Trump playbook: put the desire for a self-aggrandizing political rally ahead of basic public health and safety concerns about COVID, and show utter contempt for workers in your organization's employ (in this case, the employees who had to enter City Hall after the rally to do their jobs).

Oh, and referring to Mayor Durkan as a sub-human ape who should be caged (!) was another wonderfully classy touch. Just as our national political climate improved dramatically after we collectively told Trump, "You're Fired!", our local political dialog will improve greatly when you no longer have a reason to spout such sophomoric garbage.


@ 13 -- "Did she campaign against Biden? So what?"

Donald Trump was and is bad. Historically bad. Campaigning against his opponent isn't a "so what." It reveals that someone -- in this case Sawant -- utterly lacks good judgment.


Sometimes when I am about to click the big red button “CONTRIBUTE NOW” to support independent journalism I come across a piece by this guy Rich Smith.
I mean there are really good opinion pieces in other newspapers which present the authors point of view with some claims and facts why they have those beliefs. They also present critical points and pros and cons against their own views.

This unbalanced piece here screams at the readers as a desperate attempt to convince us that all of this is some big conspiracy by the evil doers who want nothing but to ruin Seattle city and only this guys favorite city council candidate is the chosen one. And nobody else. Curse-littered, non-structured, space-filler, opinionated propaganda.

The cocktails I’m having tonight are a toast to Rich’s who saved me from contributing to the Stranger.


The recall campaign is basically going with bogus charges that could actually be enforced in a recall campaign because they just don't like her. I don't think anyone actually cares that she led a protest to city hall during a pandemic or that she protested at the mayor's house, especially considering everyone in this city hates Durkan.

It truly is illuminating that a mayor can order police to terrorize and gas the citizens, and delete her text messages during that time (yes, we didn't know this at the time) won't face a recall because it's 'unconstitutional' whereas protesting that said terrorizing of citizens at the mayor's house is a valid excuse to recall someone.


I was wondering how long it would take The Stranger to finally publish an article about the fact Sawant admitted to spending public money on her private campaign...Seems it was over 2 days...Sawant also exposed a former Federal prosecutor's home address to the public, which is a violation of law as well...we'll see how long it takes for that to sink in with Sawant's adoring public...putting someone's life on the line for your petty political needs...


A woman of color wants to help the disadvantaged americans, that must drive republicans and centrist absolutely nuts. If only they could find more moral authority for their selfishness...



I passed a house the other day with one of those "In this house we believe" signs and a Recall Sawant sign, it was just very interesting to me.


As far as bingo cards go, it's pretty dull


@31: "I don't think anyone actually cares..."

Then the prospect of a recall should not bother you. Why then your comment?

"It truly is illuminating that a mayor can order police to terrorize and gas the citizens,"

You might try "illuminating" yourself on that point. The recall effort failed because the Mayor of Seattle does not have operational control of the SPD, and therefore could not have done as you said.

"...protesting that said terrorizing of citizens at the mayor's house is a valid excuse to recall someone."

The private address of Mayor Durkan's family home was protected because she's a former federal prosecutor, and another federal prosecutor in that same office was brutally murdered, in his own home, by an assailant who has never been publicly identified. ( CM Sawant, as a Council Member, had access to Mayor Durkan's family address, and illegally provided it to Socialist Alternative, organizers of the abusive 'rally' there. This was an act of malfeasance on CM Sawant's part and there's no doubt CM Sawant did this (despite her copious lies to the contrary). The only question remaining about it is whether the citizens of District 3 will vote to recall CM Sawant for her threatening action against the Mayor's family.


@1 It doesn't matter if any of the charges are true, she's still a better choice than any of the folks who ran against her. The fact that the folks behind the recall are sore losers who backed her opponent is all the reason any thinking person needs to know to vote against the recall, even if they have a better candidate they would back in the next election. Hell. even if she were accused of an actual felony, I'd oppose the recall simply because the folks backing it are the enemy of every working-class voter in Seattle.


@39: Vague generalities about the Recall Sawant campaigners: check.
No actual quotes from any actual Recall Sawant campaigners: check.
And then, The Tell: SOCIAL MEDIA!!1!

You took your three swings, and you missed all three times. As you trudge dejectedly back to your dugout, please consider the following:

How is filing a Recall Petition not "democracy"? Per our constitution and our laws, several citizens of District 3 filed a petition for recall, citing CM Sawant's alleged abuses of our public office. The petitioners' claims were vetted by a court; one was discarded, three remained. CM Sawant appealed to our state's Supreme Court, lost completely, and now faces the possibility of a recall -- if, and only if, a sufficient number of registered voters in District 3 sign for one. All three remaining charges of malfeasance were for acts she committed after her most recent re-election; what could be more fitting for a recall election? She's even admitted one of the three claims is true! The only question which remains is if the voters in District 3 want to recall her for it, or for either of the other two claims, or for some or all of them. Again, if you have any evidence at all that the recall process has been unconstitutional or undemocratic, please tell us what that evidence is.

(You might also want to reconsider a decision-making process which has your political expenditures dictated to you by persons you claim to despise. Why do you cede to them so much power over you?)


The point of this flyer is to get ahead of Sawant's "right-wing recall" talking point. They're saying "we're not right-wingers -- we're Democrats who are just as upset as you that Sawant campaigned for Trump."

Sawant gets away with lying over and over and over and over and over, and never gets called out for it by The Stranger. Instead they write snarky hit pieces against her opponents like this one.

How about you do a profile of some of the folks involved in the recall campaign and see if you can find a single right-winger among them? But no, you just uncritically repeat Sawant's lies while finding stupid reasons to snipe at her opponents.

Shame on The Stranger, as usual.


What @19 said. Thank fuck most of you tools don't live in the 3rd, and those that do will forget to vote. This old white D3 property owning male can't wait to put her back into office (for good), just to piss y'all off. Everyone needs someone to question why, despite infinite money, Seattle is so fucking horrible to anyone who's not just like me, but most of you have gotten lazy and just want someone to hate.
@1 -- tl;dr;fu

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