King County Executive: incumbent Dow Constantine emerged four years ago from a strong field. He has governed with such proficiency and diplomacy that he has not drawn a serious challenger for this incredibly important position. He has gradually steered Metro towards a better set of policies, although there is a long way to go. His appointments to the Sound Transit Board have been basically sound.
King County Council District 1: Rod Dembowski impressed us in the scuffle to be appointed to this seat last year, and he has not disappointed in office. Although his time there has been short, he already chairs the Regional Transit Committee and is bringing organizational energy to it.
King County Council District 9: Shari Song or Reagan Dunn. Reagan Dunn has been an active and productive voice in the fight to reform Metro’s route structure, eager to make Metro’s dollars go farther by eliminating ineffective service such as the infamous Route 42. While the Council probably needs more route-reform yes votes than revenue yes-votes, we can’t bring ourselves to endorse a Councilmember who will likely oppose more resources for transit. Shari Song will support more revenue, but hasn’t given us any indication that she brings any particular transportation expertise or correct positions on Metro reform.
Seattle Mayor: STB has already endorsed Mike McGinn for mayor.
Seattle Council Position 2: Richard Conlin has been the most consistent voice for the public good of density on the council while his colleagues serve neighborhood special interests.
Seattle Council Position 8: Mike O’Brien hasn’t been as deeply involved in transportation issues as we thought he might, but he remains a fairly reliable vote for better transit, less emphasis on cars, and more housing in Seattle.
Bellevue City Council 4: Steve Kasner presents the strongest challenge to incumbent Kevin Wallace, who not only delayed East Link planning with wacky proposals like the Vision Line, but is now claiming credit for creating a collaborative compromise. With more community leadership experience, Kasner is also not likely to carry all the conflict-of-interest baggage that Wallace is knee-deep in when it comes to light rail.
Bellevue City Council 6: Lynne Robinson makes for a worthy opponent against Don Davidson, who presided over much of the council’s shenanigans when it was fighting Sound Transit. Robinson has earned endorsements from all three of the council’s pro-rail minority and has supported keeping East Link accessible to neighborhoods and employment centers.
Mukilteo Mayor: We can’t imagine that transit is a very big issue in Mukilteo, and in an outlying suburb alternative transportation often means bikes. Jennifer Gregorson earned Cascade Bicycle Club’s endorsement and has a recent Urban Planning degree from UW. These are excellent indicators of a leader ready to enact environmentally sensitive policies.
STB’s Editorial Board currently consists of Martin H. Duke, Bruce Nourish, and Sherwin Lee.