It’s a big election night for transit and land use issues. Ballots drop tonight at 8:15 (though that won’t decide close races). At stake are the single most important office for local transit (King County Executive, though it’s not expected to be a competitive race); and a series of Seattle incumbents with generally positive track records on transit and land use vs. a string of challengers that, charitably, range from “uncertain” to “mixed.”

All of our general election picks are arrayed here and here for your celebration, sympathy, or ridicule.

159 Replies to “Election Night Open Thread”

    1. I think it’s a stretch for that to be relevant to tonight’s races – or to any of the subjects on this blog.

    1. That’s a close one– I hope Steve can pull it out but he would have to be very lucky with the late returns.

      1. As a resident of Bellevue, I had a difficult time with the vote for Wallace and Kasner. Yes, Wallace is a crook, but he’s our crook (that’s a reference to Chicago politics for those of you without a sense of humor or history.) He fought for the B7 alignment but after he lost he worked to bring the council together and make the best of a bad situation. He’s fair about recusing himself from votes on conflicts of interest (which are frighteningly frequent) and he’s open about his agenda. Notably, he almost always responds to my mails to the Bellevue City Council, something Claudia Balducci could never bother to do.

        Kasner is a bit of an idiot–I’m referring to the Democratic tsunami video–and is rated less qualified by the League of Women Voters. The clincher for me, though, is the fact that he’s a member of the East Bellevue Community Council. From their homepage: “Established in 1969, the East Bellevue Community Council is empowered by state law with approval/disapproval authority over certain land-use actions in a part of East Bellevue. The EBCC may also act in an advisory capacity on other land-use issues that directly or indirectly affect its jurisdiction.”

        The EBCC was established when Bellevue was desperate to annex their land in the late 60’s. Through their guidance, East Bellevue has remained one of the nastiest areas of the city for the last 40 years. They have a small shopping center that had a K-Mart. Traffic regulations caused the K-Mart to close. Costco offered to open an innovative Costco Fresh grocery store–they refused. Now, 10 years later, they’re getting a Wal-Mart. Congratulations, idiots. Unfortunately, the EBCC will never vote itself out of existence. I have friends who have moved out of the area to avoid the EBCC meaning that they have a safely curated set of supporter-residents.

        My point: A Wallace victory isn’t necessarily an endorsement of Wallace. A Kasner victory can only be read as a rejection of Wallace because Kasner is an idiot who’s built his political career in a playground full of idiots.

        Sorry for all the ad hominem :)

  1. Results have dropped. It looks bad for McGinn. Conlin is in a tight one but it looks like he can eke out a win.

  2. Do we have any ideas who Murray will bring in as transit issues specialist/expert? Who was his expert(s?) as state senator?

    1. Experts? Snort. Did you see all the gaffes he made in the last month wrt transit, TOD, pedestrian and bike infrastructure?

      No, Seatle is choosing poorly.

      1. ” Seatle is choosing poorly.”

        You care so much you can’t even spell this fabulous city’s name correctly?

      2. Oh, he made some gaffes– but I chalk that up to being anti-McGinn/McSchwinn. He had some transit cred in the past. Who was working on the transportation package that died? Will he bring that person with him to the city?

      3. Gee Fred trollstone,

        In this era of tablets and phones, input errors happen. Also, this platform precludes editing comments after the fact. Deal.

        That didn’t excuse the presumptive Mayor-elect from questioning bike infrastructure on Westlake as a campaign issue. Or the Streetcar plan. Or the Burke-Gilman trail completion and so on…

        And watch as instead of using the city’s dark fiber to create a tech innovation boom, this new mayor will likely give monopoly to Comcast to give us piddly amounts of bandwidth at exorbitant prices.

      4. “That didn’t excuse the presumptive Mayor-elect from questioning bike infrastructure on Westlake as a campaign issue. Or the Streetcar plan. Or the Burke-Gilman trail completion and so on…”

        No doubt that’s why he won. The people have spoken. Move to Stockholm why don’t you.

      5. “And watch as instead of using the city’s dark fiber”

        Gigabite is vaporware from Ohio. Hasn’t laid an inch on fiber anywhere. A shell company.

      6. @Fred You’re right. Let’s shut them down and go crawling back to Comcast and CenturyLink begging that they raise our rates as punishment.

  3. Well, let’s all congratulate Faye Garneau, Toby Thaler, and Dick Morris for pulling off the Fake Grassroots Coalition Trojan Horse Contorted Logic Total Misrepresentation Of Democratic Intent campaign of all time. Yay for slick mailers and bountiful spin! I bow to our new Lesser Seattle masters!!

    1. One thing we can do is mount an Equal Protection challenge against the map, the stated goal of which was geographic, not popular equality. Clearly a violation of “one man, one vote.”

      1. Eh? “District boundaries shall be drawn to produce compact and contiguous districts that are not gerrymandered. The population of the largest district shall exceed the population
        of the smallest by no more than one percent.”

        How is this not popular equality?

      2. Just for starters, the map “cracks” the central urbanized area, and its relevant concerns, into three separate districts stretching 6-9 miles to the northwest, northeast, and southeast. In doing so, it also conveniently “packs” the I.D. in with all the other minorities in the southeastern district, leaving its needs unrepresented both within downtown and within its sprawling new district.

        How does any of that represent a “compact” and “not gerrymandered” result?

      1. Fred Flintstoned, don’t you have a Seattle Times comment section for your inane comments? I’m sure you’ll have a lot of company there. What sort of stunted adolescent feels the need to type dozens of trolling posts on a website he’s obviously not sympathetic to? Nevermind, it’s a rhetorical question.

        By the way, I thank you and your wife for helping to pay for ST2 with every purchase you make. Looking forward to using the station near my condo daily in 2016!

    2. This is a really big loss. I hope we can do something to redraw these district lines in a way that is more fair to large population centers.

      1. I don’t know. I voted against it, but it’s not clear that it will have the effect that its supporters expect. And, if the council becomes more balkanized, it just strengthens the hand of the mayor, which is sort of the opposite of the intent. So I’m not panicked.

    3. Well at last I have someone to complain to when they try and pack homes onto my neighbors’ lots.

      1. Oh no, single family home owners have been ignored for too long in Seattle and now we’re back, with a vengeance and a districting system that takes back power from developers and downtown money. You call us NIMBYs, I don’t give a sh*t.

    4. What is especially depressing about the districts vote is the lack of coverage. It is hard to argue whether one representative will be better than another (especially when they agree on about 99% of the same goals, as in Seattle) but policy should be debated with more clarity. There is no reason why the negative effects of district elections should not have been debated more. I think it just slipped under the radar, and folks just went ahead and voted for it. More than anything, I blame The Stranger. When The Seattle Times and The Stranger both endorse the same thing, it will likely win easily. That is what happened here.

      It is ironic that in the mayoral election, the incumbent was replaced not because of his policy preferences, but because of his perceived competency. It is hard to see how we will get more competence when we limit each councilmember by an arbitrarily drawn district. We will get more yahoos — and good people will have to wait around until the district incumbent decides to quit. Hmmm, what does that remind me of ….

      1. I too blame The Stranger.

        Voter turnout was middling among all demographic groups this election cycle, so the many thousands of Stranger devotees who impulsively vote the paper’s recommendations on down-ballot issues may have significantly swayed vote totals.

        If only The Stranger had looked into the players and the motives behind the charter amendment, if only they’d questioned the everything-to-everyone social-media talking points and the slick, ubiquitous marketing materials coming from a tiny campaign with few (if any) grassroots volunteers (but with a boatload of money), the public might have been stoked into having a conversation on the actual merits of the proposal and the devils in its details.

        Instead, The Stranger went the most facile route imaginable — “the current Council is my enemy, so my enemy’s enemy must be my friend” — and so sealed our NIMBY-dominated fate. For an organization that derives such glee from calling others “stupid fucking credulous hacks”, this was a “stupid fucking credulous hack” moment for the ages.

      2. The Stranger did mention that they didn’t like some of the people who were supporting the initiative, and that it produced some of the biggest arguments in their offices as a result, but that they hated the current Council so much they figured it was worth it even then (and even with public financing also on the ballot).

        Worth noting: One of the initiative’s supporters apparently told the Seattle Time$ it was the fact that people had an actual map of district boundaries that led to the initiative’s passage. Of course, drawing district boundaries before the fact is terrible policy, but what does it say if it was key to the initiative’s success, especially if ANY district boundaries would have done the trick?

        (In my view, the solution to gerrymandering is to require people to vote on any new district boundaries, thus ensuring self-determination, and this might be seen as an argument against that, but this may have been a case where NIMBYs joined forces with folks like the Stranger that like districts in general on principle, so it was mostly a vote to institute districts at all with enough votes for this particular scheme to put it over the top.)

    1. OK, so will Mayor Murray make my evening commute from downtown to Ballard not take 45 minutes on an “express” bus?

      1. Fred– and her commute 4 years from now (after more people move into Ballard) will take how long? How much will she pay for parking?

      2. @Charles B: Are you asking to only hear one side of the argument?

        (Yes, that’s a rhetorical question, and unnecessarily provocative. But I hope you get my point.)

      3. AP: There are thousands of online forums where people can debate whether transit should exist, and whether it should be legal to build anything denser than single-family housing.

        STB is one of a tiny number of forums where people who already believe that transit can exist should talk about how to build it and why, and where people who already believe that cities shouldn’t be illegal can talk about what we can do to help create more of the kinds of urban neighborhoods where people want to live.

        Even without the trolls, I’m sure you’ll agree that there are plenty of arguments here. :)

      4. @Aleks, I agree with you–as I almost always do–but I think the dissenting opinion is important. We need to compare transit to cars in order to keep our arguments grounded in reality. Heck, I compare transit to car every time I take a bus or taxi to the airport. And I think it’s tragic that Sound Transit advertises “take a train from Bellevue to the airport” when the 560 will remain faster. The dissent is important.

        Now, it’d be fantastic if the dissenting opinions weren’t trolls. But most of the “trolling” on STB is fairly well-reasoned for trolling. Today’s thread wasn’t quite so well-reasoned but I suspect we’ll never hear from Fred Flintstoned in the future. Ignoring trolls–or mocking them, as today’s dialog does–generally makes them disappear.

      5. To me the issue is, cars usually carry one person, or occasionally four. A bus carries fifty people in the space of two cars or maybe three to be generous. A bus uses as much gas as ten to twelve SUVs, so if it has twelve passengers it’s breaking even on mileage, and any more passengers just makes the fuel-efficiency greater. So therefore, buses should have some 12 to 25 times priority over cars on roads — which is more than enough to expect dedicated transit lanes, signal priority, bus bulbs, etc. With trains the capacities are higher, fuel efficiency is greater, and the trains and rails last longer. Wired trains and buses can be powered by a wider variety of energy sources including more environmetally-friendly ones.

      6. Mike, you’re too pessimistic on gas mileage. Depending on the SUV, a bus uses as much gas as between three and six SUVs. Buses get about 4 mpg. SUVs get anywhere from 10 to 25 depending on the SUV.

      7. @AP Of course I appreciate dissenting opinion. Fred is not arguing in good faith though, he is being a troll. Check out a few of his other posts on this thread and that should be clear.

        Have some facts about how we don’t need transit and cars will solve everything? Bring it on, we will go over your facts and we can argue about them.

        Tell me I need to move to another state and refer to us as “your kind” then you’re not here to have a discussion, you’re here to throw eggs at people you don’t like.

    2. And yet… the only local politician that did much of anything to speed up the glacial pace of Sound Transit. A strong advocate for bicycle and pedestrian safety and on the right side of just about every issue the people on this blog care about.

      … how exactly was he the worst mayor ever?

      I think the jury is out until we see what effort Murray puts in to learning about the city he’s supposed to represent.

      1. “A strong advocate for bicycle and pedestrian safety and on the right side of just about every issue the people on this blog care about.”

        Yes, on this blog. The people of Seattle obviously don’t agree.

      2. “The worst mayor” is code for they don’t like his road diets, variable parking rates, opposition to the DBT, and emphasizing transit.

        As to whether somebody is a good mayor, it’s not really about whether people vote him in for another term, but whether he leaves a lasting positive impact on the city. Schell and Nickels were both good mayors but both were voted out. In Schell’s case many people regret voting against him (because they thought for sure he’d get the other primary slot), and in Nickels’ case many people miss him (anthough then we wouldn’t have gotten McGinn’s unique achievements). Seattle has developed a worrying trend of voting out good mayors.

        It’s still possible that Murray will rise to the occasion, and once he’s in a Seattle office, actually do something for Seattle. I’m not expecting lots of transit investments or no apodment restrictions, but as long as he avoids doing the worst things (a la Lesser Seattle and help-the-burbs-all-the-way, baby) that’ll be something. I think Murray is not likely to reverse the complete streets and greenway and mixed-use trends that McGinn implemented, which built on Nickels’ precedents, which built on Schell’s ideas. Steinbruck now, he might have reversed them.

      3. Let’s hope Murray learns that 85% of the city’s residents use cars, as opposed to the 4% who use bicycles, and that he owes his election to the former and that he was implacably opposed by the latter. I understand Murray has a reputation for being thin-skinned and perhaps vindictive. I hope that, when it comes to the bicycle fringe, he’s vindictive as all get out. The bicycle lobby needs to be put down, and put down hard.

      4. @Old People on the Rampage

        Actually, despite what you might expect, quite a number of Murray supporters were also transit and bicycle advocates (they apparently had other reasons for voting for Murray). The city as a whole is much more strongly in favor of transit and bicycle infrastructure, and it shows in usage numbers and the initiatives that pass in this city.

        The car ownership numbers in this city are still pretty high (you need a car to get much of anywhere out of Seattle still) but daily work commutes are not anywhere even close to that 85% number you listed.

      5. Honestly, what this result tells me is that Nickels should never have been voted out; his situation may not have been all that dissimilar to Schell, in that he was probably the candidate with the most support, but because people have to choose a single candidate two other candidates wound up sneaking away with more votes than him and that’s how we ended up with Mayor McGinn. We clearly still haven’t found the right primary system for this city and its quirks; maybe an approval voting system is the way to go.

      6. Oh, please. No one voted for Murray because McGinn was “too bike friendly”. The anti-growth, anti-density, pro-parking folks had candidates to choose from — but it wasn’t Murray. Murray was basically running as “everything you like about McGinn, but none of the bad stuff”. He never made a policy distinction with McGinn. He criticized around the edges when he had to (the way many on this blog criticize) but if you are looking for a major difference in policy, even in the priority of his policies, then you would have been disappointed. Murray ran on competence. He ran on his ability to hold a meeting and not piss everyone off. You can read all about in Danny Westneat’s column today or the part of The Strangers article that actually makes sense (like some on this blog, The Stranger makes way too much out of the supposed political differences).

        I supported McGinn because he was the incumbent, and after stumbling out of the block, hit his stride. But to suggest that this was some great ideological struggle is ridiculous. Who knows what Murray will do with regards to transit and density? He might be better on the former (do we really need a bunch more streetcars?) but I don’t expect him to do better on the latter (although you never know).

      7. You obviously weren’t paying attention as Murray repeatedly showed signs of opposing every major transit and bike policy of McGinn only to flip-flop immediately upon being called out on it.

    3. Will Mayor Murray bring his kumbaya skills to the fore and powwow with the state to get more money for public transportation?

      Will Mayor Murray study West Seattle for light rail and if its population growth justifies it, put it on a fast track to getting it?

      1. Well, one can see a future challenger to Murray say something along the lines of, “is your commute better than it was 4 years ago?”

      2. Hopefully they’ll ask, “Are all your daily trips better” rather than just “Is your commute better”.

  4. Seattle is losing a good mayor. On the positive side, we’ll have one less very mediocre State Senator representing us.

    I’m not looking forward to four years of Murray ignoring Seattle’s needs while focusing on “regionalism,” in hopes of becoming US Senator or Governor or whatever job it is he actually wants (which, given his lack of knowledge of Seattle issues, clearly isn’t the one he’s just been given).

      1. Yup. Actual voters. You talk about it like it was a landslide, not 56/43 after the winner & his PACs vastly outspent the loser.

        But by all means, keep talking about how McGinn gutted Domestic Violence programs and made violent crime explode all over the city. That’s what the campaign ads were about, not bike lanes and road diets.

    1. I’m so disappointed by this. The mayor of Seattle needs to advocate for us, the citizens of Seattle, not the suburbs. :(

      1. ‘citizens of Seattle’

        Then why did the citizens of Seattle send McFatboy back to Greenwood?

    2. What he says in campaigns and what he does in office are not necessarily the same. We’ll be watching to see whether he really sells out Seattle. When he realizes he actually has a responsibility for the city’s interests, he may get more reasonable, and educate himself on the city’s issues. What’s best for the city is really best for the suburbs too, because we need to look for win-win situations and not win-lose.

      1. I agree that what is best for the city is often best for the suburbs too, but unfortunately too many politicians in the suburbs (and especially in the rest of the state) think screwing over or disempowering Seattle is a great objective. Murray seems to think this is Seattle’s fault, for reasons unclear to me (it’s not like Seattleites vote to screw over everyone else–we’re subsidizing the rest of the county and state!), and if he shakes enough hands and apologizes enough for Seattle being an urban liberal paradise, this will somehow make everyone happy and cooperative. Good luck with that.

        But more importantly, his conception of what Seattle needs is totally misguided suburbanism–when it comes to light rail his vision is expanding suburban spines (which will have diminishing returns the further you go) rather than building out the urban network that is most needed, and he want to get rid of subarea equity, so Seattle can pay for these lines instead of ones in the city. This is the Seattle mayor!

      2. That’s where “educating himself on the city’s issues” comes in. There’s got to be something in between DP’s perfect subways, suburban extensions only, and streetcars that aren’t fast enough to address the need.

    3. Seattle is losing its worst mayor in 50 years. Michael McGinn was an insulting disaster.

      1. I fail to see how that’s possible. Almost *every* metric in the city improved in the past 4 years under his administration. I would hate to know what success looks like.

    4. That’s the very short silver-lining to this. But don’t worry, the Anti-Seattle Democratic Machine will put us back down. Just like they did with the Mayor and The Seattle Times will, of course, help.

  5. You should have seen my last year at this time, when Pierce Transit was on the ballot and failing. I was frantic. I was a person that no person would want to be around. Like, I was literally losing hours of sleep per night, and my college grades suffered.

    1. You and me both. As a carless student at PLU, I was really fretting over that one.

      This year there’s nothing that I’m quite that invested in. I’m somewhat thankful.

      1. As a student at PLU, I was also crushed by the results of Prop 1.

        (Also, I thought I was the only Lute who read this blog!)

      2. My name here is similar to my name in the directory, so if anyone here is interested in meeting up, it should be easy to contact me.

  6. So is the Okanogan County public transit proposition called “TRANSPORTATION DIST 0K Proposition No. 1 “? If so, it’s passing by a wide (almost 11%) margin. See what happens when you don’t have pressure from big auto dealers?

  7. As a Federal Wayan, based on how childishly Skip Priest responds to the reality of light rail from SeaTac (long, expensive, slow), I am happy to see Jim Ferrell overwhelmingly winning.

    1. My bet? He will stay away from as much controversy for the next four to eight years as possible while build up political capitol state wide to run for some higher office.

      That may mean that getting much done on the transit/complete streets front will require a lot more grass roots organizing on our part.

      If we are lucky we won’t have to fight against structural changes in Sound Transit that will hurt the city’s cause.

      Unfortunately, his lack of clarity on the important issues up to this point means we may have to just watch the first few months or so unfold to know exactly what kind of mayor he is going to be. In the mean time, ramping up grass roots organizing for the issues we care about would not be a bad idea.

      1. If Murray hates Ballard to downtown light rail options, do we try to sell him instead on the Ballard-UW option, connecting voter rich areas like Ballard, Fremont, Wallingford, etc. while avoiding the expense of the Ship Canal issue?

      2. I am taking more of a liking to an east – west automated subway myself these days. I still want to see both happen though.

      3. Well, you’d better understand that Murray owes nothing at all to the Seattle Transit Blog or the Seattle Bike Blog or the Cascade Bicycle Club. You opposed him all the way along, so you’d best be advised to behave yourselves if you don’t want to find yourselves dining on crumbs with the other riff-raff in Steinbrueck Park.

      4. @Old People on the Rampage

        Sorry maybe you weren’t paying attention.

        Murray may not be the candidate of choice for the folks on this blog, but he certainly was not an anti-cycle anti-transit candidate. It may be true that losing McGinn means we lost our strongest candidate on the issues, on paper at least Murray still agrees with most of the things we are advocating for.

      1. Yep, in the one neighborhood that will soon have more new transit service than any other part of town…

      2. He lives on Capitol Hill, but not the Broadway side. He’s got a mansion somewhere near the 12’s tail.

      3. It’s also the one neighborhood that has more ridership than any other part of town, and the most willingness to use more transit if it exists. It’s not Capitol Hill’s fault that North Link won’t open for several years. Ignore the streetcar, because that was an ill-thought-out concession. If you actually look at Capitol Hill’s bus service, it’s not that great for residents. The 10/11/43/47/49 overlap only to Bellevue and Boren, on the very edge of the hill, in reach of only a few apartment buildings. The 10/11 overlap to 15th, but when they’re half-hourly they’re scheduled five minutes after each other. and the 11 is hourly evenings. The 49 has achieved full-time frequentness, but that’s the only place where you have more than half-hourly evenings and Sundays.

      1. I know that I’m violating my normal rules about not responding to trolls, and for that, I deeply apologize.

        But fuck it, I’m mad! This election sucks!

      2. And I’m happy about it. And the fact that you’re mad makes me even happier! Fuck yeah!

    1. Ah, you were afraid big bad McGinn was going to come in the middle of the night with his bulldozer, tear down your single-family home, and replace it with Hong Kong-style apartments, did you?

      1. Ah, I see — you were afraid that your neighbors would voluntarily sell their homes to other people, who would then voluntarily build homes slightly smaller than your on land that you have no legal title to.

        Man, it’s a good thing for your net worth that that isn’t happening!

      2. So wait, I thought the lesser Seattle people wanted Seattle to be more about single family homes… now its a bad thing to build more of those? Oh wait, its not that house that was there since the 1960’s and that’s just not cool?

        Maybe you would rather the housing problem in this city be solved by developers leveling your whole block to build a massive apartment complex instead?

  8. It looks like Jan Angel is now a State Senator.

    My Republican side: Good, thank you G*d. My wallet will be somewhat safer now.

    My transit side: Aw Geezus H. Montechristo transit is in somewhat more danger now.

    Tomorrow, we will have real battles to wage about and for transit. Let’s be ready for them. Let us be unafraid to walk it to win it, to challenge the road bullies, to stand up and say we choose to not be victims or in the case of my King County friends victimized again.

    Because quite frankly, transit advocacy isn’t about left versus right, it’s about mobility and sustainability. We know we’re right, let’s act like it.

      1. I really do miss the era when rational people ran the republican party. I am glad there are at least some rational people left.

  9. http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=I1sH-GW-7TY

    One of the few good political ads I have seen. STB readers tend to support this, but as a person who has a reasonably good understanding of how economics works, I think it’s nonsensical to require $15 minimum for EVERY job in existence. The way to ensure sufficient pay for workers is to require a $9 wage for $9 work, and a $15 wage for $15 work. The law SeaTac needs is a law that sets wages for case scenarios, not an overgeneralized $15 across-the-board.

    1. So what you’re saying is that there exists work valuable enough to the economy to pay someone to do it, but not valuable enough that the person who does it can pay all their bills and participate productively in the economy in other ways?

      1. I think we can all agree that there’s a minimum wage which is too high. If the minimum wage were a million dollars an hour, clearly it would lead to mass unemployment.

        I think we can also all agree that there’s a minimum wage which is too low, or at least in the absence of other mechanisms (like a universal basic income). Economics research has repeatedly found that low minimum wages (up to $9, at least) have a minuscule effect on the level of employment.

        Given that, we’re just arguing about the level. Is $15 too high, too fast? I don’t know the answer to this question. What I do know is that, on an inflation-adjusted basis, the minimum wage used to be higher — as high as $10.55 in 1968 — and that, since then, labor productivity has increased by leaps and bounds. And frankly, I think this will be a useful experiment, if a poorly-controlled one. Whether it succeeds or fails, I think it will be informative.

      2. Sea-Tac is an interesting labor market in that it’s captive of the airport. The prices of things are already inflated and the owners will either raise prices further or cede some of their profits to labor.

      3. Couldn’t have said it better myself, d.p.

        It’s not about what the work is worth. It’s what a persons time is worth.

        If you want a person to do something for you for 40 hours a week, no matter what that thing is, that person should be paid enough to support themselves comfortably without government assistance.

        Aleks: Even in 1968, the minimum wage bought a standard of living well below the poverty line. We are a rich country, that shouldn’t be allowed to happen.

      4. @Aleks, it’s been said that if the minimum wage had kept pace with inflation it would be north of $22/hour today.

    2. We can just wait and see whether it really hurts employment in SeaTac. If it does, the city can repeal it. If it doesn’t, it proves that this was a myth, and you’ll start seeing similar measures around the country. When the working poor get more money, they spend it immediately on necessities, and that helps the local economy and generates more jobs. It also encourages stores to stock necessities rather than climate-destroying luxury junk. Some employers may stop hiring, but it’s hard to tell how many of them really can’t afford it vs how many are just ideologically opposed to minimum wage/taxes/unions. I feel sorry for the employees in that video, having to play a role in a campaign that’s against their interest.

    3. My memory is hazy, but wasn’t the $15 minimum wage only for certain classes of jobs? I think it may have been just for airport workers or something…

    4. As a person who understands how economics works, you no doubt understand that this is a complicated question. As a result, I would imagine you have read the various studies; the ones that say that raising the minimum wage above a certain level is good for the overall economy and the ones that don’t. I am curious as to which studies you based your opinion on, and why you discounted the other ones.

      Oh, and I think Charles gives a pretty good summary of the issue on the ballot.

  10. Where are you all getting your numbers for the mayoral election? King 5 and Komo 4 have had the same #s since the polls closed.

  11. Mostly good results. We get rid of McGinn, and we fire a shot across the bow of the best city council money can buy. This ought to translate into some respite for the neighborhoods, at least a little bit. The Republicans pick up a seat in the state Senate, which makes it marginally less likely that King County Metro will get to stick its slimy hands in the pockets of automobile drivers.

    But take heart, Seattle Transit Blog! The bike lanes are probably here to stay, and the light rail boondoggle is unaffected. You didn’t lose as much as it would seem, nor did we gain as much as we’d like. Many more battles to be fought against your kind, that’s for sure.

      1. They can’t live within their budget. I will be voting “no” on any car tab increase.

      2. They can’t live within their budget? I’ll be sure to tell that to the police/fire, libraries, parks. Not like slimy Metro, which can’t even turn a profit. Damn socialists.

      3. Their budget keeps getting slashed. Tell me, if your employer kept taking 20% of your salary and then expects you to deliver his kids in your car on your gas money how would you feel?

    1. NEWSFLASH –

      Many Metro commuters actually own cars. If they can’t get a bus, they will start driving a car. You want to see real road congestion? Don’t fund mass transit in urban areas.

      Folks around here complain about traffic, but I’ve seen worse at midnight on a Sunday going into LA.

      1. Metro says they’ll make cuts of “up to” 17% if they don’t get the money they want. I don’t believe them. Pierce County’s transit authority tried scare tactics a while back, and when the voters told them to go to hell the money suddenly materialized, just like it will here.

        Seattle and King County government has no shortage of money. They voted to spend more than $300 million on a new basketball arena, and they’re spending billions on light rail. The money is there. I’ll be voting against any car tab increase. If we’re lucky, the Republicans in the state Senate will hold the line, but I’m not optimistic because I’m sure the usual interests have greased the skids in Olympia.

        It’s probably going to go to a vote, and when it does we’ll see the mother of all propaganda campaigns. It’ll be interesting to watch, anyway. I already know how I’m going to vote, though. And yes, I’m a terrible, heartless person, and very stupid. I’ve heard it all before from my betters at places like the Seattle Transit Blog. But I’ll still vote against you, just as I did in 2011 when you and your friends unsuccessfully tried to jack up our tabs by $60.

      2. @Old Man on the Rampage: I don’t know if you’re terrible, heartless or very stupid. I have an opinion about you being obnoxious. But what I know is that you’re in a shrinking minority. Washington State is becoming more and more liberal. The Republicans in the state senate won’t hold. Your hatred of transit and bicycles is becoming more and more unusual in our area.

        If you want to live in a place where people with your ideals rule, consider Texas, Florida or Alabama. They’re nice this time of the year. And you can carry your gun with you to church.

      3. “The money always appears when voters wise up” is a valid point for what it’s worth, at least if you’re willing to take the chance that it doesn’t. I take it, then, that you voted against the property tax renewal for Medic One? If there’s anything that should be funded out of general revenues, it’s that.

      4. “Seattle and King County government has no shortage of money. They voted to spend more than $300 million on a new basketball arena, and they’re spending billions on light rail.”

        The people who chose to “spend billions on light rail” are the voters, not the Seattle or King County governments. The basketball arena was a financing plan, and as I recall it would have spent no public money, it would have just given the owners a funny tax break. Metro’s problem is that funding is isolated in different buckets for different purposes, and transit’s bucket is being squeezed.

      1. @Old People on the Rampage, you say Seattle and King County “… voted to spend more than $300 million on a new basketball arena, and they’re spending billions on light rail.” While I’m new in this blog, I under the impression that Sound Transit builds and runs light rail. If so, your postings lose credibility inversely to your inaccuracies.

    2. Yes, we replace with McGinn with a guy who (Gasp!) agrees with him on every issue. Seriously, dude, if you think you are getting a guy who is anti-density, or anti-bike, or pro-parking or pro-car (or however you want to put it) then you will be very disappointed. You had your chance to elect a guy like that in the primary (or at least a guy more like that) but you lost. Now you will have a guy that supports everything McGinn supports, but is simply easier to get along with.

      This is basically Barack Obama defeating Hillary Clinton. From a policy standpoint, there is basically no difference. From a governing standpoint, who knows?

      1. I don’t know if he agrees with McGinn on every issue—I get the impression from his talking points that he isn’t keen on expanding light rail within the city (unlike McGinn), but is perfectly ok with the suburban to city expansion.

  12. The one “positive” thing about Ed Murray I learned from the campaign is that he doesn’t believe strongly in much (especially in regard to transportation) and quickly reverses his position when faced with criticism. Of course this means the NIMBY coalitions and the Seattle Times have plenty of power for mischief, but it also gives an opportunity for activists on the side of good to help set the mayor’s agenda, if we can make enough noise. It’s nowhere near as good as having a mayor who actually is intent on doing good things, but it’s better than a mayor who is intent on doing bad.

    1. I agree. Oh, and to say that blogs like this “now have no power” is ridiculous. Murray fought hard for the endorsement of this blog. If he was really running against the goals of this blog, then Murray would have blown it off (the way a conservative Republican blows off a bad rating from the Sierra Club).

      Besides, let’s not kid ourselves into thinking that the current mayor did everything right. He did a lot of good things, but his infatuation with streetcars was misguided (in my opinion). I think we could have moved more people (and would move more people in the future) if he had considered other alternatives. I supported him mostly because he was the incumbent. What I do fear, though, is backsliding with regards to density. This is the most controversial issue in the city, and McGinn was a leader on the issue (although he didn’t go as far as I would). I hope that Murray will continue the progress made in this area, but I fear he will try too hard to please everyone (a problem that McGinn never had).

      1. Yup. While there needs to be some education involved (e.g., Mayor Murray, don’t you think the voters of Fremont, Ballard, etc might remember at election time your support of a Ballard to UW light Rail), our interests can be served.

  13. So now we know who actually runs Seattle, and it’s not Ed Murray or the Monolithic Downtown Business Machine. It’s Faye Garneau.

    That’s just not a good development for transit in the city, no matter how you look at it.

    1. I wouldn’t worry about Faye. I think she will find that things don’t change quite as much as she expected. Going from 9 city council members who must listen to you to only 3 is not what I would call an improvement. And we still have a Strong Mayor form of government, with the mayor elected at-large.

      It will be interesting to see how this all works. Faye obviously intended to neutralize the power of DT by putting it in District #7 with solidly SFH oriented, and extremely stogy, Magnolia. But part of the argument for the pro-side of this issue was that the cost of campaigns would go down. If that is true, then the DT money will actually go further in District 7 then it would have otherwise.

      But I find the focus on the big, evil DT business “establishment” to be a bit conspiratorial. And, like all good conspiracy theories, more often than not there isn’t any truth to it. Faye and her activists might find that all they accomplished was a little bit of shadow boxing.

      1. Faye Garneau won’t have only 3 council members who must listen to people who share her agenda; she’ll have 5 to 6. (The at-large candidates can safely ignore her… probably.)

        The districts were expressly designed to produce a majority in support of her agenda. Only District 3 will be reliably pro-urban, with some hope for District 6. The other five will be reliably pro-parking and anti-density.

        And District 3 is going to marginalize itself by electing Kshama Sawant, who has already indicated her intention to run in the district elections.

      2. Incidentally, I only wish there were a Big Evil Downtown Business Machine. I’d probably be aligned with it 80 percent of the time. Most downtown interests are urbanist, pro-development, pro-density, and pro-transit.

      3. I agree with all of the points you made. The Big Evil Downtown Business Machine is a myth.

        I’m not sure what this will do to the council, though, except make it worse. You are simply restricting the number of candidates that can run. Imagine if you had to pick the 100 best basketball players in the country. My guess is that Chicago, L. A. and New York would send a bunch. But now imagine that each player had to come from an arbitrarily defined district. The second best player from Brooklyn gets replaced by some guy from Walla Walla. That is basically the reason the House of Representatives has so many yahoos and guys like Norm Rice aren’t represented in Congress. This will happen to Seattle, and it isn’t a good thing.

  14. The election went pretty much as the polls suggested it would – no real surprises.

    A friend of mine ran into Stuart Elway last week and asked him, “Is McGinn really going to lose like they say he is?” My friend contracts occasionally with Stuart for polling services s they have a solid professional relationship.

    Stewart’s response was, “He lost the election 3 years ago.” I took this to mean that he lost the election when he took on the DBT. That really soured a lot of Seattle voters on McGinn, although it is unclear if McGinn’s loss of support over the DBT was more due to “trust” issues or “transportation” itself.

    Interestingly enough, the issue polling indicates that the number one issue for voters in the mayoral race was transportation, and that voters overwhelmingly thought that Murray was better able to deal with transportation issues than was McGinn. I tend to agree with this assessment. McGinn has made great strides in biking infrastructure, but nothing else of substance has been accomplished.

    1. So if you believe Murray is better able to handle the transportation issues, do you think he’ll support expansion of Light Rail to Ballard and West Seattle as has McGinn and will he work to obtain money from the state to make it happen?

      1. Wasn’t one of the criticisms of McGinn was that he promised all this (putting it on the ballot) but could not make it happen? Whether it was his fault or not is another question….

  15. Wow, I think STB just got it’s third troll! You guys must be doing something right! Welcome Fred Flintstoned.

    1. Personally I think its just Sam by another name. Anyone else notice that Sam hasn’t posted on threads in the last few days?

  16. Elections get me worked up, too, even been involved with some of them. Then, they’re over. Was hoping to see an update with results of the transit measures.

    Remember, if your candidate loses, it’s not the end of the world or the community you live in.
    If your measure/issue loses, it’s not the end of the world or the community you live in.
    Election results should not bring stress and agony to the general populace. With that said, there are some excellent relaxation meditation videos on YouTube (and probably elsewhere).

    Nothing citywide in Portland last night, but the Columbian reports that Tim Leavitt was re-elected as Vancouver, WA, Mayor:
    http://www.columbian.com/news/2013/nov/05/first-election-results/
    (Please note that Jeanne [“gavel down”] Harris was defeated in the Vancouver Primary several months ago.)

  17. Surprised nobody mentioned the 26th LD special election. Incumbent Democrat Nathan Schlicher is trailing Republican Jan Angel. If she wins, it further cements the MCC’s control of the Senate.

    1. It was mentioned by the trolls. Unfortunately I am not surprised by this outcome. When I last lived west sound I found the politics trending further and further to the right.

  18. Well, Mr Murray, you won. However, now you really do have to answer questions about Transit in some manner other than just “I’m pro-transit.”

    Seriously, though, while I’m not thrilled about the outcome I’m choosing to remain hopeful about our new mayor for the time being.

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