It's official: King County Elections certified the necessary number of Sawant Recall signatures and set the election date for Dec. 7, Capitol Hill Seattle Blog reports. You better believe Councilmember Kshama Sawant has something to say. “This unprecedented December election, in the middle of the holiday season, is crucial for the Recall, because they know that many working people won’t even know an election is happening. What they are attempting is blatant voter suppression, in order to engineer the most undemocratic election possible. One, they hope, will be decided by the wealthiest, whitest possible electorate," she said in a statement.
Supreme Court upholds WA tax on big banks: In an unanimous decision, the Court said Washington's piddly 1.2% B&O tax on banks with profits exceeding $1 billion was legit, the Associated Press reports. Now the state's upside-down tax code will be a liiiittle more balanced in favor of poor people, who pay six times more of their income in taxes than the wealthy do in this ass-backward system. On a petty note, the unanimous decision must have embarrassed former Republican Washington Attorney General Rob McKenna, who argued the case on behalf of the banks.
The utility shut-off moratorium ended today for those outside Seattle: If you're one of the "hundreds of thousands of customers with bills," then you need to contact the utility company and work out a plan or else risk a shutoff, KIRO 7 reports. If you're struggling to pay, see if you qualify for state or federal assistance. Seattle's moratorium runs through mid-January.
Workers settle with Amazon: The e-commerce leviathan that exists partly to pay for its founder's space fantasies settled with a couple workers who claimed the company wrongfully fired them for "announcing an internal event for warehouse workers to tell tech employees about safety conditions at Amazon’s warehouses," the Seattle Times reports. The two Amazon employees, Emily Cunningham and Maren Costa, no longer work for the company but plan to continue organizing with Amazon Employees for Climate Justice.
The Mariners have a slim shot at making the playoffs: The Seattle Times gives the local Major League Baseball team a 26% chance with "basically zero" margin of error to debut in the postseason, which is apparently chance enough to set off a spiritual movement across the state.
A couple highway tolls are going up tomorrow: The 99 tunnel and the Tacoma Narrows Bridge tolls will raise tolls by 15% starting Friday, the West Seattle Blog reminds us.
Seattle cops apparently continue to willfully misread new state law: David Kroman over at Crosscut wrote another piece on cops committing 45% fewer people to involuntary treatment when service workers call them, "a trend that’s continuing into September." Cops and service workers plan to hold an emergency summit with the Mayor and Council next Tuesday.
University of Washington study finds police killed 55% more people than we originally thought: A New York Times analysis of the study, which was published in The Lancet, says the "findings reflect both the contentious role of medical examiners and coroners in obscuring the real extent of police violence, and the lack of centralized national data on an issue that has caused enormous upheaval."
If you've got conservative family in eastern Washington or in any other deep red place, and if you still talk to them regularly for some reason, then send them this piece from Joe O’Sullivan, which offers vivid details about just what will happen to them in the hospital if they don't get the fucking vaccine.
Long live Charles Mudede:
There is no God, Brandi. Why play these games.
— Charles Mudede (@mudede) October 1, 2021
Another homelessness debate: At 5:30 pm the Seattle Times and We Are In will host a debate on homelessness and housing between candidates running in three local races: King County Council District 3 (Sarah Perry vs Kathy Lambert), Seattle City Attorney (Nicole Thomas-Kennedy vs Ann Davison), and Seattle City Council Position 9 (Nikkita Oliver vs Sara Nelson). Register here and tune in.
Phew, that was close: The federal government will remain open at least until December 3, which is the new deadline for action in a bill President Biden signed Thursday evening to avoid a shutdown, the New York Times reports. Some Republicans pulled their opposition to the bill after Democrats caved and removed a measure in the legislation to raise the debt ceiling. If Congress doesn't raise the debt limit, the U.S. will default on its loans in a couple weeks.
We'll find out if conservative Democrats plan to sink Biden's agenda tonight: Seattle Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal has, as they say, said what she said. Since this summer, the deal has always been that Biden's budget and the bipartisan roads bill must move as one. Tonight House Speaker Nancy Pelosi plans to bring the infrastructure bill to the floor without a deal on Biden's budget, and progressives maintain they will not vote for it. The Washington Post has the story on all the flurry of negotiations that appear to have moved no one. The only new info came out of coal baron Joe Manchin, who said he wants to lop $2 trillion off Biden's budget. For that price, “Obviously we could not do for the children what has to be done, we cannot do for seniors what has to be done. We would not be able to do paid family and medical leave," said Bernie Sanders.
Here's Manchin's ransom note on Biden's budget, which Schumer signed in July:
Sen. Joe Manchin proposed a $1.5 trillion top-line number for reconciliation to Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer on July 28 with an agreement to start debate “no earlier than Oct.1”
Both Manchin & Schumer signed the 1-page agreement outlining spending conditions pic.twitter.com/CSDZYYhYbv
— Mona Salama (@MonaSalama_) September 30, 2021
If you saw this scribble below Schumer’s signature on the Manchin’s topline doc from July, a spokesman for Schumer says it says “I will try to dissuade joe on many of these” pic.twitter.com/q2WffvF7ae
— Frank Thorp V (@frankthorp) September 30, 2021
Manchin admits he's committed to making sure poor people have a harder time accessing benefits:
"I cannot accept our economy, or basically our society, moving towards an entitlement mentality."
— Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) says his hesitancy regarding reconciliation is because he is prioritizing "means testing." pic.twitter.com/w9tuVPPJ7j
— The Recount (@therecount) September 30, 2021
Ethiopia boots UN officials: The government declared seven UN leaders "persona non grata" and gave them 72 hours to leave for "meddling" in the country's affairs, Al Jazeera reports. The shocking move came "two days after the UN aid chief warned that people in the northern region of Tigray were likely experiencing famine due to a government blockade of aid."
Over 100 dead in Ecuadorian prison riot: Gangs apparently fueled fighting on Tuesday, which led to prisoners using "explosives and firearms on each other," the BBC reports. Even after two days, police at the Litoral Penitentiary still don't have the situation under control, even as families surround the complex hoping for word on the dead.