93 Replies to “Election results open thread”

    1. I’m thinking that the vote totals will probably double in time. I’ve also noticed that percentages can change, but almost never over five or six points and often less.

      Except for maybe Mosqueda, the Seattle races are almost assuredly decided.

      1. Most of the 2019 results saw a ~6% swing in the net margin in favor of the more progressive candidate. The biggest swing in the 2019 election was
        a 13 percentage point swing from Egan Orion leading by 9% on election night to Kshama Sawant eventually winning by 4%.

        An 18% swing for Nicole, 21% swing for Nikkita, or 30% swing for Lorena would all be unprecedented, as would be a swing towards the more conservative candidate, Kenneth. Basically, the races are over, though the margins won’t look quite as bad for progressives when all is said and done.

        See election night results vs final results from 2019:
        https://komonews.com/news/local/2019-election-results-for-seattle-city-council-candidates
        https://crosscut.com/politics/2019/11/2019-election-results-seattle-king-county-and-more

  1. Very surprised by the results in Seattle. I figured mayor was a toss up and Oliver and NTK would be favored.

    1) I had to facepalm at the takes last night expressing shock / concern that Mosqueda was barely winning. As anyone who follows Seattle elections knows the Election Night lead for a progressive only expands in the coming days. She’ll likely win by a wide margin.

    2) I’m surprised that City Attorney is shaping up to be the closest citywide race (ignoring Mosqueda’s much safer than it appears lead). Both González and Oliver have prior citywide name recognition and didn’t seem to capitalize on that.

    1. Re your first point: Mosqueda will certainly win but I think the surprise/hot takes are because the election night margin was so close against a candidate with not much credibility. A more viable moderate candidate may well have unseated her.

  2. It was a one-issue campaign on homelessness and the voters have spoken that they want the candidates who promised to sweep homelessness out of city park and prosecute misdemeanors. I wouldn’t read much more into it than that.

    Bruce Harrell’s campaign knocked it out of the park. He told voters what they wanted to hear and somehow managed to dodge accountability from his track record on the council. Kudos to him.

    Messaging will win you one election but you need results to win two. Will doubling down on the sweeps be enough to satisfy the voters? I have my doubts…

    1. To simply go back to sweeps would be out-of-character for Mayor-Elect Harrell. That’s not the kind of councilmember he was. He endorsed Compassion Seattle, but that initiative wasn’t just about sweeps. It was also about at least some funding for housing. Some will be disappointed when he slow-rolls the sweeps and fast-tracks housing, relative to Mayor Durkan’s efforts.

      He will be more ready for the job of Mayor than Durkan still is today. Well, she got one thing right in her administration, and Harrell would be well-served by keeping Casey Sixkiller on the vaccine distribution job, as he set up the model the rest of the nation ought to be following.

      While I’m glad Ken Wilson will not be on the council to vote for more conservative housing policies, he may be the Transportation Department head we need right now, ignoring the wierdness of his “Open up Bridge Access” dogwhistling. Experience in project direction has been too lacking while the current and past mayors used the position as spokespeople instead.

      1. You can’t address homelessness without addressing the source: the high cost of housing. You can’t address that without addressing zoning. Either Harrell has to change his mind on zoning, or it will be much the same (i. e. not much will happen when it comes to homelessness). Oh, I suppose that the problem will become less visible, but that’s about it. There are over 4,000 homeless kids in Seattle Public Schools. How many do you think there will be four years from now?

      2. If only Gonzalez had made that point. But the perception is that the minority communities that back candidates like Gonzalez oppose upzones out of fears of gentrification, and even if that isn’t necessarily the case, putting an emphasis on favoring big upzones ran the risk of turning both white SFH dwellers and supporters of minority communities against her, leaving only “latte-sipping liberals” on Capitol Hill.

  3. It seem’s CASE’s experiment with not endorsing candidates work out well for them. I’d be interested to see if, now that there’s been a “moderate referendum” on Seattle politics, they’ll come out with endorsements again 2023. It seems like a lesson learned that obvious appearance of being backed-by-business was a negative in 2019, but if the moderates can deliver (ha!) then maybe they’ll be emboldened again.

  4. Harrell was not the change candidate, and I’m really more disappointed that it will be business as usual in the mayor’s office. Policies that could give long term results, such as getting rid of SFH zoning rules, will also be off the table.

    1. I was just hoping for a Mayor that would actually be able to work with the Council to get stuff done. I guess some of the more milquetoast Councilmembers will give in to whatever the rest want, but welcome to more years of council waffling and mayoral doldrums. May housing prices continue to skyrocket as homeowners reap the benefits of a return to corporate friendly downtown.

      Who wants to take bets on HeadStart repeal? Fall 2022?

      1. I was going to make the point that people thought moving to districts for the Council would make it more of a tool for business and less friendly to progressives, when the opposite might be the case. But the Council didn’t go too well for progressives either, so it’s more likely reactionary forces will feel they have a mandate.

      2. District elections don’t necessarily tint council one way or the other. The change is that neighbors know who to call with a problem. A good block-by-block campaign and subsequent responsiveness can overcome almost any ideological lane. If you watch Milk, you will see this discussed as the pitch in SF was that their board would be more representative of neighborhoods and less of the business interests there.

        Citywide council seats are harder to win in a grass-roots effort. Those are the seats in this election.

    2. The odd thing is, he was able to sell himself as the change candidate. Katie Wilson, writing for CrossCut, was able to nail this election quite well: https://crosscut.com/opinion/2021/10/narratives-define-seattles-2021-election. Obviously the first narrative won (“Extreme Takeover”). Even though Harrell is remarkably similarly to Durkan on the issues, he is able to champion this “return to the center”, as if all of our problems were due to the extreme left just getting carried away.

  5. When crime and public safety are issues in an election they are the only issues. I have said this for months. On the eastside the issue was we don’t want to become Seattle. Turns out neither do Seattleites.

    The local and national elections reflect that Republicans have recaptured the suburban vote. Clinton lost the suburban female vote in 2016, Trump lost the female and some male suburban vote in 2020, and now Biden has lost the suburban vote, but really it was the progressive wing of the Democratic party. The only real swing voters in this country live in the suburbs. Progressives love to demean the suburbs and talk down to them, or call them racist, while demanding their tax revenue, then seem surprised when suburbanites reject progressive candidates and find them a pain in the ass.

    Suburbanites don’t like crime (and tend to exaggerate it, so understand that), and vote based on their lives, which is public safety, education (CRT which is another entire issue), lower taxes, and the nuts and bolts of government. There are few states more suburban than New Jersey, and Murphy is a pretty good and popular governor, and still may lose when his own party predicted an 11 point victory the day before the election.

    The unfortunate reality for Democrats nationally is Pres. Biden’s presidency ended with Afghanistan, and his huge lurch to the left. My guess is the loss of the governorship of VA will end the Build Back Better bill, and McAuliffe is already blaming Jayapal for his loss, and McAuliff is a very influential Democrat.

    Look for Jayapal’s star to dim, (and of course she played her hand when the media lights shown on her), and the House to immediately send the infrastructure bill to Biden for his signature, because even that bill is now at risk.

    Republican’s are likely to sweep both houses in 2022 (and were going to just due to Afghanistan), and moderate Democrats know the President is unpopular, and the progressives in their party just drove their careers over a cliff, IF Republicans can get more candidates like Youngkin through the primaries in 2022.

    Fortunately for Republicans look for the Supreme Court to strike down the Texas statute on abortion, or probably Mississippi’s, but to expand gun rights which is not the issue in the suburbs some think it is, considering 3.2 million Americans became new gun owners after the 2020 riots. If I were the national Republican office I would lock the Texas attorney general in a lead box until the 2022 elections.

    The biggest loser in this election is Trump. Youngkin proved to Republicans that without the toxicity of Trump Republican polices are favored in the suburbs, especially since the Democrats have gone so far left. McAuliffe looked like a career politician while Youngkin looked like the prototypical suburban dad.
    Whether someone like Youngkin can make it through the primaries to be the 2022 congressional Republican candidate is the real question. The Republican right, like the Democrat left, are the biggest issue for each party.

    And this is not racist as some will claim it is. The Lieutenant Governor for VA Sears is Black, R, and first Black Virginian to win statewide office, and I thought her story and her campaign were very impressive. If you are a D what should really worry you for 2022 is R’s swept VA statewide offices.

    When it comes to Harrell I agree with those that homelessness and crime are the two big issues, and no doubt it helped Harrell to have Seattle progressives promote a candidate for city attorney who wanted to end prosecution of misdemeanors. Maybe the worst campaign theme in history, especially in Seattle in 2021. People in Blue Ridge don’t read the Stranger.

    But voters didn’t elect Harrell to wring his hands and actually house the homeless, because there just isn’t the money for that. They also didn’t elect him to pursue fantastical solutions like upzoning the residential neighborhoods, considering those are the folks who just elected Harrell.

    They elected Harrell to REMOVE the homeless, where they don’t really care, and Harrell is going to find that pledge difficult to fulfill with Seattle’s financial realities and likely much less federal money, except with Covid coming under more control he should have more capacity in the shelters.

    The two other big winners in this election are Seattle, if Harrell and Davison can restore law and order, and transit, because although some don’t seem to understand it on this blog, transit general fund subsidies depend on Seattle being a business hub, and ridership depends on safe streets. I always find it amazing transit advocates so often vote against their own interests, and don’t know it.

    My prediction is things only get more red from here. But don’t forget when Republicans retake Congress in 2022 more than likely they will move too far right for the suburbs, and shoot themselves in the foot.

    1. https://youtu.be/3m5qxZm_JqM?t=86

      “We’re sweeping the homeless OUT of the parks and public spaces!”

      “… into another park or public space?”

      “No, no, the homeless were swept beyond the public spaces – they’re not in any public space!”

      “Well where are they?”

      “There not anywhere, just they’re just in alleys, under bridges, or in prison… and we’re going to study building 200 units of shelter in 2030.

      The left is poisoned by its inability to organize, because getting things done is harder than doing nothing. So Republicans promise to Do Less (or ensure the unprivileged Do Less and can’t threaten the socioeconomic order), and deliver, while the Democrats promise to Do More and consistently fail, unless the work is so obvious and so easy that they can pass the bill. Everyone’s a capitalist until the corporations fuck up, and then the capitalists turn around and beg government for social security.

    2. The blame game has already begun on the national level, with moderates blaming the progressives, and the progressives blaming the moderates. Biden is caught in the middle where, anything he does upsets either one wing of the party or the other.

      My personal take on this is that the Democrats have walked into a trap, where they’re dependent on not just moderates and progressives, but anti-Trump conservatives to have a governing majority. But, once in power, their coalition is too divided for it to hold together without a common enemy. Even the majority in the popular vote that Democrats have trumpeted for years, is now looking like a paper tiger, largely driver by even conservative voters of color voting for them out of habit. Those habits are changing, and the fact that a majority of this country was never truly liberal is now coming back to bite.

      That’s not to say all is lost and we are headed for a one-party state. Once the Republicans get control again, I’m sure, as Daniel Thompson said, that they will inevitably overreach, and the political winds will shift back. Unfortunately, the 10-year window to address climate change will likely be over by the time this happens, so at least on the climate change issues, Democrats will have to come forth with a Plan B.

      1. asdf2, I think your perspective is correct. The fundamental flaw was for Biden and the Democrats was to embark on a Great Society agenda without the vote margins or a mandate.

        For example, Pres. Johnson in 1966 was elected with a 155 seat margin in the house and 69 senators. He passed something like 70 bills in the first 90 days.

        In 2000 Pres. Bush II was elected with about the same margins as Biden has. His one major piece of legislation was No Child Left Behind that Teddy Kennedy marshalled through the Senate. Biden won with huge margins in 2008, but still Obamacare watered down without a public option was his one big piece of election until the massacre in 2010. Manchin was not being facetious when he told progressives to go get more seats in 2022 if they want a $3.5 trillion BBB bill.

        Biden did very well with his Covid stimulus bill, that by historical standards was huge. He received 69 votes in the Senate for the bipartisan infrastructure deal, when previous presidents could not get a deal on infrastructure. Based on his margins in the House and Senate, most would say this was an incredible achievement, and consistent with why they voted for Biden.

        Then the wheels came off. Afghanistan was a true and self-inflicted disaster, and Biden’s generals warned him to leave a force of 2500, when the U.S. had not lost a soldier in 18 months in Afghanistan. Then the Delta variant. Biden suddenly looked incompetent.

        And then the progressives hijacked his signature bill, the infrastructure bill, to hold it hostage for the BBB bill, which pissed off everyone, especially moderate Democrats. Jayapal is as responsible for the loss in Virginia as anyone, and the declining hopes of the Democrat Party. There was never the votes for a $3.5 TRILLION social bill, and to hold the bi-partisan infrastructure bill hostage for something that now is unlikely at $1.75 trillion was suicide.

        Republicans will run the table through 2022, but as you note probably go too far. But they now feel the momentum, which is everything, especially after the dispiriting losses in 2020.

        Republicans now know that if they find and run Youngkin’s they can even sweep Virginia. Some states they could run anyone and win, not unlike some blue states, but Republicans now know they WILL win swing states if they run moderate candidates like Youngkin.

        My guess is Democrats and especially Democrats will remain in denial through 2022, but if the 2022 elections are bad enough for D’s at the state and federal level they will, like the R’s and Youngkin, become desperate enough to win to move to the middle.

      2. Pretty much all of the policy proposals are extremely popular. Joe Manchin’s own state is quite supportive of the policies.

        One thing Sinema ran on was allowing Medicare to negotiate drug prices, but she doesn’t actually vote that way.

        If the people elected to do the representing actually represented the views of the voters, rather than a select few of them, the results would be vastly different.

      3. allowing Medicare to negotiate drug prices

        That’s something Trump was trying to get through. Big Pharma has deep pockets.

      4. The fundamental flaw was for Biden and the Democrats was to embark on a Great Society agenda without the vote margins or a mandate.

        Unlike Reagan, who barely won a majority, and then proceeded to completely change American politics for a generation (and counting). Or how about George W. Bush, who didn’t even get a plurality of the vote, starting not one, but two wars.

        Look, Biden *did* have a mandate. No one has beat an incumbent by that much since FDR beat Hoover. The only reason his agenda has stalled is because Manchin is an idiot. He either thinks Biden’s agenda is too far to the left, or that it will hurt him (or the party) politically. Both are ridiculous. Much of the spending is simply to catch up for the attrition that has occurred over the years, as Reagan-Gingrich policies gutted the national infrastructure (both physical and social). Politically, this would be a big win, as the biggest complaint about both parties is that they don’t do anything. If neither does anything, then you might as well vote for the party that gets you lower taxes. (Oh, and Obamacare didn’t help, since it was so complicated, that much of the country doesn’t even know what it did.)

        Biden has already passed very important legislation, including a law that will cut child poverty in half. The only reason people aren’t focusing on that is because the press loves a battle, and in this case, a political one. Of course the Delta variant isn’t doing the president any favors, as idiots still refuse to get vaccinated, and then blame the government for either being too harsh, or somehow not fixing everything.

        Yes, Biden screwed up the exit from Afghanistan, but we lost 13 soldiers in 2021. We lost 11 in 2020, and 21 in 2019. If he had left 2,500 soldiers (as you suggest) we would have lost a lot more in 2022. And more in 2023, and more in 2024…

      5. Unlike Reagan, who said…

        I didn’t leave the Democratic party, the Democratic Party left me.”

        Manchin is an idiot.

        Manchin went on to decry what he described as the “toxic” nature of the present political discourse.

        “This is a shame when we start this war of words,” he said. “I’m not going to speak ill about any of my congressional friends and colleagues on the House side or the Senate side. We can have a difference of opinion, but the rhetoric around here has gotten so harsh and so toxic that you can’t agree to disagree anymore.”

        Will Rogers…

        I am not a member of any organized political party. I am a Democrat.

  6. Well I don’t disagree with Nathan D., if you remember what the voters demanded from Harrell: to remove the homeless from public parks, school grounds, and streets (including buses and RV’s). Progressives have had a lot of time to do that, and do it in their own way, and voters realized that “way” was never going to work. It only got worse.

    I saw Harrell’s interview last night. The first question from the reporter was about the homeless, and Harrell repeated several times his administration beginning in January will be “very aggressive” in removing the homeless from parks and streets and school grounds.

    I don’t think the voters were saying upzone the residential neighborhoods and see if a bunch of new multi-family construction will house the homeless by 2040. That is just such an inane progressive idea, exactly the kind of class ideology Harrell’s and Davison’s huge margins rejected. People want results, not class envy. Harrell has maybe 12 months to get rid of the homeless and clean up the streets.

    Harrell’s other huge issue is finances. Federal money for all cities is going to end. There won’t be a Build Back Better bill, at least not for much money. Seattle will face huge funding issues if the business revenue from downtown does not return. The eastside restructure suggests a lot of that business revenue won’t return, or will shift to someplace else. Progressive ideals (and socialism) usually rely on other people’s money.

    1. Market Urbanism (the only kind of trickle-down economics that actually works) is a very Liberal idea, but it upsets conservatives who are used to new construction happening in other people’s backyards. So, Harrell and Nelson promise to continue to concentrate it in Urban Villages and will be surprised when all they get is more gentrification and a perpetuated housing crisis.

      Public housing (and its healthcare sibling, permanent supportive housing) is the progressive idea, which requires taking from the rich and giving to the poor. Of course, the rich think that being rich is virtuous (conflating wealth with “success”) and poverty is only a result of personal failure moral failing, so therefore taking from the virtuous and giving to the deficient without instant gratification can only be tolerated for so long.

      Dan blames Progressives for not being able to house the homeless and solve crime, but he makes no recognition that it took a relatively progressive Council to pass new progressive taxation, which will only begin to be used for building new housing next year. The MHA rules (established in 2017), have resulted in almost $100M for low-income housing, with more dollars coming because developers are willing to pay it. Between MHA and the Housing Levy, the Seattle Department of Housing will have funded the construction of around 6,000 affordable housing units between 2017 and 2022.

      Dan thinks there’s not enough money to build enough subsidized housing solve the affordable housing crisis. He might be right – however, if he (and other conservatives like him) believe that pursuing new tax sources is a dead end, then why not offer any other viable solution?

      Their answer is “I don’t know what the solution is, but I don’t like your solution because taxes r bad” and it’s infuriating.

      1. To answer Ben’s question, little introspection comes from political defeats. They are too painful, so the losers resort to denial, because otherwise it would be about them and their policies. Trump is no different.

        Real introspection comes from political victories. Youngkin’s victory (and the statewide sweep) was the introspection Republicans needed to show they can — and usually will — win without the toxicity of Trump, because without Trump the suburbs favor moderate Republican policies. 38 governor races are up in 2022, and Republicans swept 2/3 of state races in 2020 with Trump, so if they take Youngkin’s approach in 2022 they will run the table for a very long time, until the Democrat Party moves back to the middle.

        Is that my doing? Of course not. That is just America.

        Not surprisingly Nathan D. wants to make it about class, like families struggling to make it in suburbs are the wealthy elite. Nathan writes that “however, if he [Daniel Thompson] (and other conservatives like him)…”, without realizing that in real life, and not on this blog, I am the moderate. I will change my vote depending on the candidate despite party label. It is we who determine elections.

        Nathan D. also writes: “Public housing (and its healthcare sibling, permanent supportive housing) is the progressive idea, which requires taking from the rich and giving to the poor.”

        Well, as my brother likes to say, No shit Sherlock. Of course it does, because every progressive policy requires someone else to fund it. Progressives usually have little money, and naturally would like more.

        It is hardly surprising that those who have to fund these policies are a little more keen on the efficacy and success of the policies. If someone else is paying who cares. ( I disagree on Nathan’s view on the MHA but that is too complex an issue for now).

        Nathan D. also blames “conservatives” for not solving the homeless issue, and the crime issue, but the fact is progressives and Democrats have controlled Seattle and the state for years. The party out of power does not own the failures of the party in power. Gonzales’ and Thomas-Kennedy’s positions and denials on crime and homelessness simply reinforced that new blood was needed, and the more progressive wing’s policies do not work, and are dangerous. Voters don’t have to tell politicians how to do things, just what they want done.

        I would hardly call Harrell or Davison (or really Youngkin) a conservative, except maybe on this blog, but this blog is not a realistic snapshot of America, or even Seattle. I am sure I could go on a Proud Boys blog (if I knew one) and they would be claiming the Republicans who won in 2021 are not conservative enough.

        Ideally I would have taken $10 to $20 billion from the $131 billion the region will spend on ST through 2044 (an additional $35 billion from the realignment alone) and spent that on affordable and emergency housing, and bridges, and some other things. Just the WSBLE would fund the housing solutions.

        Of course Nathan never raises the fact progressives in Seattle decided to spend their entire wad on light rail, much to nowhere, because hey, if you are not paying who cares. Except the people who are paying care, and they think tax funding is finite. It was Nathan, not me, who decided to spend all the tax money on light rail, rather than some on housing, but refuses to own that.

      2. I think it’s too early to jump to conclusions here that centrism is the key to winning nationally. There is also the possibility of progressives simply not voting because they didn’t like either candidate and were frustrated with their party on the national level.

        Even swing voters, I recall reading once, aren’t really all centrist like popular myth suggests, but are rather drawn to the left on some issues and to the right on others. The party that wins these voters over is the one that convinces them that the issue where they are in agreement is the one most important, or most likely to be delivered on. One can easily make a case for voters that are economically liberal, but socially conservative being drawn to the Republican party because Republicans deliver on the socially conservative stuff time and time again (look at the Texas abortion bill, for example), but Democrats don’t deliver on the economically liberal stuff. For Democrats, the path to winning at least some of these voters back is probably to cut out the identity politics stuff that offends everyone (e.g. never use the terms BIPOC or LatinX in a campaign speech), yet somewhat counter-intuitively, move left towards a more Bernie Sanders-like platform on taxes and health care, focused on benefits for all, not just benefits targeted at racial minorities.

        Some circumstantial evidence that favors this argument include relatively high polling on many Build Back Better items, when separated from the party, along with the presence of Bernie->Trump voters in 2016. In WA, there was a legislative district in Issaquah that very nearly flipped to a progressive challenger in 2020, so even our own suburban voters are clearly not all moderate. I have even seen polls showing 20% of Republicans nationwide supporting Medicare for All and 30% of Republicans in Seattle (take the small sample size with a grain of salt) supporting a significant expansion of local transit. So, while not the majority of Republicans by any means, Republicans who are progressive on economic issues do actually exist, which leaves the most likely reasons for these people to be Republican in the first place to be conservative stances on other issues, such as abortion or immigration.

        Of course, it is also possible that there really are enough moderate, centrist swing voters in the suburbs to outweigh all of this. I view both possibilities with an open mind. But, these are questions that need to be answered by data, not by armchair political pundits blindly assuming that everyone thinks the way they do.

      3. Maybe I need to start using “Relative Conservative” to describe all the Enlightened Centrists/Moderates in the PNW that think both sides of the political spectrum have equal merit in left-leaning cities like Seattle. But to me, if you don’t think you’re a conservative because you’re not alt-right, you’re fooling yourself. Just because the Overton Window of politics in America is firmly right of center, doesn’t mean I can’t tell it like it is.

        Dan, you bring up taxes as if you’re some hero for paying them – and routinely claim to pay more taxes than most people on this blog, so yeah, I’ll bring up class because like I’ve said before, until the difference in material wealth is negligible across all peoples, there will always be socioeconomic stratification. You sound like the peasant character in “Monty Python and the Holy Grail”, accosting Dennis for “bringing class into it again!”

        I never blamed conservatives for not solving the crisis – but “no shit sherlock”, they don’t want to – at least not in any way that isn’t incredibly cruel. What I criticized was “moderate” politicians’ (especially partisan democrats) inability to actually do anything that isn’t incredibly easy. Reading comprehension!

        Dan, you attack ST as if the measures put to the voters are preventing anyone else from proposing additional income for housing or mental health. And yet, we’ve got MHA, the JumpStart tax, the housing levy, and others that are (albeit slowly) funneling money to the problem. You imply some sort of taxation saturation, even though there’s plenty of money sitting between Bezo’s Spheres (and elsewhere) to return that wealth back to the workers that generated it.

        Progressives aren’t spending some limited “wad” – the measures were put forth to the ST region and approved by the same Seattleites that just put Harrell back into City Hall, and the 0.5c/$ and car registration fees weren’t diverting any money from anywhere else. You imply this fundamental notion of taxation saturation that you have never provided any proof is real.

        Northgate is open. Redmond is 2023. Lynnwood and Federal Way are opening 2024. The region is getting its money’s worth from ST2 – if people like Dan get out of the way, we could get our money’s worth from ST3 as well, and money can be found to put roofs over heads as well.

      4. “ Youngkin’s victory (and the statewide sweep) was the introspection Republicans needed to show they can — and usually will — win”

        It doesn’t show that at all.

        Youngkin’s win came from a successful FaceBook campaign that painted the opposition as having a bunch of extremely unpopular positions they don’t actually have.

        Well funded propaganda from the Koch brothers doesn’t mean certain policies are or are not popular. It just proves wealthy people get the government they want.

      5. @Nathan — I completely agree with your two comments.

        A few things about the (local) election. First, Oliver and Thomas-Kennedy were horrible candidates. Thomas and Holmes would have won easily. Furthermore, they would have done a much better job achieving the goals the losers wanted. Folks (like The Stranger editorial board) seem to ignore that. For a politician, it isn’t what you want, it is what you can get. Protesting can change attitudes, and change laws, but only in the long run. To actually get things done, you need effective politicians, not amateurs (like Oliver and Thomas-Kennedy). The endorsements by The Stranger played a big part in getting the weaker, less effective candidates to the general election. It also weakened the power of The Stranger, leaving only The Seattle Times as a major source for endorsements. It isn’t easy to make the Seattle Times editorial board sound like the reasonable choice, but The Stranger managed to do that, with their complete dismissal of solid candidates in the primary.

        All of this hurt Gonzalez. Instead of being seen next to Thomas (a former aid) she was next to someone whose political website is largely a bunch of fists in the air. She was forced to align herself with Thomas-Kennedy, as the alternative (a law and order idiot) was much worse. At best it connected her with some hard working campaign workers. At worst it provided just the narrative that Harrell wanted — that the council is the source of our problems (not say, the mayor) as they are nothing more than extreme activists that can’t get things done.

        It also didn’t help that she ran a horrible campaign. Harrell was fortunate in having a lot of third party money flooding in, and they ran nasty campaign ads, like this:

        This is a hard hitting ad, and addresses the number one issue in the campaign. But rather than run a rebuttal, she changed the subject, accusing Harrell of all kinds of BS. The rape ad backfired, of course, but more than anything, it was bound to be ineffective. It really wouldn’t have been hard to hit Harrell on the homelessness issue, with a similar, negative ad:

        “Harrell says he will fix the homeless problem in Seattle, but during his time on the city council, the number of homeless on the street skyrocketed [show chart]. He voted against spending money to get the homeless off the streets, and into shelters [show Seattle Times article, circling his vote], choosing not to tax Amazon, a company that now helps fund his campaign.
        [backround music becomes more upbeat, colors are brightened] As city council president, Gonzales passed legislation with will enable thousands of new homes for people, starting next year. Gonzalez will push for changes in our housing code, to lower the costs of new homes, and enable more people to avoid being homeless [show pictures of her shaking hands with a family that appears to be low income]. She has the support of various homeless agencies [show endorsements]. “As mayor I will work hard not only to get people off the streets, but to keep them from ending up there in the first place. I’m Lorena Gonzalez, and I approve this message”

        But we had none of that. Not even close.

    2. Progressives have had a lot of time to do that, and do it in their own way, and voters realized that “way” was never going to work. It only got worse.

      You do realize Harrell was on the council, right? He was on the council from 2008 to 2020. He was president of the council from 2016 to 2020. If he is so good at solving the homeless situation, why did it get so much worse during that period?*

      Sorry, it is all BS. Harrell ran a great campaign — Gonzalez did not. Harrell was able to ignore his horrible record of homelessness, while Gonzalez stupidly focused on how he handled the allegations against Murray. There was never a real discussion on how each candidate dealt with the problem in the past, or how they would deal with it in the future. Gonzalez has a better record, and is the only one proposing a major change (in zoning) which could result in a lot fewer homeless. Yet Harrell was able to control the narrative, and present himself as the grownup in the room.

      People nationwide are now deconstructing the Virginia race. Everyone agrees that one big reason Youngkin won is because he fought against critical race theory, declaring that it will no longer be taught in public schools. But guess what? It never was! Critical race theory is never taught outside of universities — and usually only in grad school. But American voters are idiots. Hell, most of us don’t even vote. America is a profoundly stupid, lazy country, but we think otherwise because we have a handful of very smart, ambitious people. Hell, we can’t even convert to the metric system. We are suckers for stupid arguments — and this cuts across the political spectrum. Obama, Trump, you name it — the reasons people choose for voting for one candidate or another are often stupid. Not everyone, of course, but when you consider that relatively few actually vote, and that a lot of people have idiotic reasoning for why they voted for a particular candidate (e. g. eliminating something that doesn’t exist), it is clear that the big problem is just intellectual laziness.

      * https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homelessness_in_Seattle

      1. Voters knew that Gonzalez and company’s plan was to just leave the homeless in place to suffer while calling it compassion.

      2. Thanks Brad, that is exactly what I’m talking about. Your comment epitomizes the ignorant attitudes of the electorate. Obviously Gonzalez has done more, and would do more to address the situation, but a lot of voters can’t be bothered looking at candidates record or endorsements. They would rather just believe some BS from a campaign ad. Thanks for summing it up so clearly, in just one sentence.

      3. In runoffs, voters pick the person they dislike the least. The primary is where they pick their favorite candidate.

        Gonzalez lost this by herself. She was often reported as an angry woman and seemed to want to shame large groups of people. That simply doesn’t jive with “Seattle nice” which is the predominant local political tenor.

        If it was closer, you could say others on the ballot contributed to her loss, but I think it was the other way around. The vote gap is bigger with her than anyone else. She brought down others.

      4. I agree 100% with this comment, Ross. I’m glad I’m old, because I got to see genuine co-operative problem solving, instead of the foolishness that passes for “politics”.

        The slippery slope started with the nomination of Barry Goldwater and Johnson’s full-bore slam response. After the Daisy ad, politics became more like it was during the Civil War, when stunningly scurrilous things were said about Lincoln.

  7. I consider myself a progressive and I voted for Gonzalez, Mosqueda, Oliver and Thomas-Kennedy. Disappointing night for me, and the obvious conclusion to me is that Seattle progressives should consider strategic adjustments in response to the very likely losses. Exactly how and what to adjust is a hard question, but I think it’s a mistake to attribute the likely losses to bad turnout, or a bad electoral environment, or structural impediments. Sadly to me, the early sense I get is that my fellow progressives are not up for this introspection.

    1. Strategic adjustments like not adopting activist slogans like “defund the police” would be a good start.

      Fundamentally, progressives need to account for the fact that there’s serious public safety concerns in the city largely attributable to a segment of the ‘unhoused’ who have fallen down a meth psychosis hole. There was a great article in the Atlantic recently describing the phenomenon:

      https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2021/11/the-new-meth/620174/

      1. Yeah, I think people are getting a bit off-track in thinking the problem is opioids. The kind of behavioral problems (especially the random violence) we are seeing in Seattle are not generally the result of opioid abuse. The problem is meth.

    2. I agree Ben. If you look at the comments by The Stranger, for example, there is no soul searching. No acknowledgement of the role they played in this debacle.

      Gonzalez was hurt by having Oliver and Thomas-Kennedy on the same ballot. This made it easier to run on the narrative so well described in this essay: https://crosscut.com/opinion/2021/10/narratives-define-seattles-2021-election. But Gonzalez just ran a horrible campaign, as I wrote up above (https://seattletransitblog.com/2021/11/03/election-results-open-thread/#comment-883810). The inability to address the biggest issue on the minds of voters (as shown in opinion polls) was inexcusable. She is the stronger candidate on that issue, but you would never know it if you only looked at the ads.

      1. It’s always so wild to me that the Stranger seems to have so much clout in their election endorsements. I always thought the Stranger endorsement write-ups were political satire and part of me is skeptical that people take them seriously, but everyone seems to think that it drives a ton of votes. SO WEIRD. The two other major cities I’ve lived in, Philly and DC, both have alt weeklies and nobody cares there about their election endorsements.

        I’m very interested to learn more about the newly elected Mayor in Boston, Michelle Wu. I don’t know anything about her, but she seemed to buck the trend of progressive Dems losing to moderate Dems and if I were an ambitious progressive politician I would study her path and approach to politics.

      2. I looked at the campaign website for Wu and her opponent. Both women, both on the city council. The position statements aren’t very different. Darn near identical. The margin of victory for Wu was bigger than in Seattle.

        For whatever reason Wu got the big name endorsments. I guess the political elite know which side their bread is buttered and came to a consensus on who/Wu would benefit them more going forward.

        One big thing that seems to have worked in Wu’s favor:

        One of Wu’s biggest suggestions was making a transit system within Boston that did not require a fare, per MassLive.com. There is still some debate about whether or not she, as mayor, can make that happen.

        Given that street campers and drug use is as big of an issue as in Seattle I don’t think they are going to like the RFZ if implemented. And how are you going to make up the lost fare revenue? King County tries to use a market rate fare and subsidize those that need help which I think is a much better approach.

        But hey, promising something for “free” is always a good campaign tactic if you can sell it to the public.

      3. The Stranger researches the candidates, interviews them, and gives them a fair chance. It’s the most comprehensive set of endorsements besides the Seattle Times. Depending on whether you read the Times’ endorsements, the Stranger’s endorsements serve as a second opinion or an alternative. I disagree with half of them, more than i used to, but they’re still worth reading and considering.

  8. Personally, I felt like the Seattle mayoral election was a bit of a sideshow this year. It seemed to be all about crime and safety, but to be honest, whenever I go into the city, it seems safe enough to me. It is too bad that some parts of the city have been overrun with drug addicts, but I’ve seen much worse in other cities. Even Seattle was much worse 30 years ago.

    Now that the voters have spoken, I hope we can drop this absurd idea that law enforcement is inherently unjust, and instead work on reforming the system to make it more fair and effective.

    I am not sure you can conclude much else from this election. Bellevue reelected its Republican city council members, but did not elect new Republican school board members. There was a lot of noise about “turning the Redmond into Seattle”, i.e. building homeless shelters, but it does not appear to have affected the city council election results at all. It looks like South King County suburbs moved a bit to the left.

    We should expect Democrats to lose control of Congress in 2023. So I hope we get some good pro-transit policies passed before that happens. As I understand it, we have some good things coming in the “infrastructure” bill, so even if the reconciliation bill has to be dropped (and probably, nothing else passes at all until 2025), it’s not so bad.

  9. Bruce Norish provided the Wednesday count. No change.

    Tuesday night, Harrell spoke of working together, finding commonality, a new conversation, and love. He did not speak of sweeps. Former Mayor Rice was on stage. The Harrell campaign had a big tent.

  10. On the good news front for left leaning Democrats, Kathy Lambert is out on the King County Council. All of the Bellevue Council incumbents were re-elected. It’s sort of like a Supreme Court appointment. Port of Seattle was almost a coin flip for me; all the candidates seemed equally bad. My fall back is to look at where they went to college and eliminate places like UW Madison, Yale, Seattle U, etc.

  11. This is from a senior citizen who has lived in Seattle for 65 years and I voted for Bruce Harrell, Ann Davison, Ken Wilson and Sara Nelson and the reason is very simple. I didn’t care for the direction that city government has been heading for the last several years and it was time to try to reign it in. And will it? We will have to see but the voters did sent a message to city hall and hopefully the message was received.

    1. What direction is that? What specific policies have been passed (or not passed) that you disagree with?

      Take homelessness. It increased dramatically over the last decade. The number of unsheltered homeless went from less than 2,000 in 2006, to over 6,000 in 2018. What policies caused that? I have my opinion, but I would like yours. What policies enacted by the city (or not enacted) caused such a high increase in homelessness, especially the unsheltered?

      1. Ross, I think you’re sealioning here. Jeff was pretty clear that he voted the way he did because he felt things were going in the wrong direction. I don’t think asking interrogative questions is going to get many people to reconsider.

      2. The main function of city government is to provide police and fire protection and maintain the infrastructure of the city and on two of those the city failed.

        After the George Floyd killing the city council said that they wanted to cut the police budget 50% and in their discussions didn’t bother to include the police chief who happened to be a black woman. They even cut her salary and that of her staff and she was that upset with those actions she retired. You had one council member who has called police officers names and the result has been that around 300 officers have left leaving the city short and at times the ability to respond to 911 calls.

        The result is that a lot of people including myself don’t feel safe in the city anymore. I have not been to downtown in several years and some that because of Covid-19 but even before that I did not feel safe. But there are other parts of the city I would be reluctant to go to.

        The lack of maintaining the infrastructure pertains primarily to bridges who are bad need of repair. SDOT has made several presentations to the city council that money needs to be allocated yet the council ignores this recommendation from its own transportation department. These bridges connect the many parts of the city and are critical to its citizens to be able move around and the West Seattle Bridge is a prime example of what happens when a bridge has to shut down. These bridges are not only used by cars but by buses and bicyclists.

        You responded to my post with homelessness and that is a critical issue but look how much money has been allocated by the city and county over the past years and yet it seems it is getting worse. Look at the parks and sidewalks that are overrun by tents and garbage. The homelessness situation needs to be resolved but it seems that what the city has been doing is not working and if you look at the city election results it seems that I am not the only one that feels that they didn’t like the direction of city government and want a new direction.

      3. Homelessness increased because a lot of people were living paycheck to paycheck and lost their jobs and housing in the pandemic. Once it’s gone it’s hard to scrape up enough for monthly rent and a deposit, especially if the only places available are more expensive than the one you had. City policies or liberal/moderate councimembers didn’t cause this; economics caused it. The number of homeless goes up and down in correlation with rents, , and the pandemic had unique effects that exacerbated it.

        The mayor’s/council’s culpability is in not generating enough housing for everybody, and subsidized housing for those who can’t afford market rate. If homeless people had housing, they wouldn’t be homeless anymore, and they wouldn’t be filling parks or pitching tents on sidewalks. There’s a narrative that most homeless refuse shelter and rules, or that their situation is caused by mental problems. That’s only a tiny fraction of the homeless, maybe 3% refuse shelter. Let’s solve 97% of the problem and then deal with the 3%. There’s also a narrative that the city/county has enough hotel rooms/tiny houses/shelter beds for all the homeless and they’re just refusing to use them. No, they have enough space to address one encampment at a time, and when they offer them rooms, most of the campers take them up on it. We just need more housing, both short-term and permanent. So when people say, “We spent so much money on homelessness but it has gotten worse so the programs failed”, no, the programs just weren’t big enough to get over the curve. It’s like when covid starts to drop and people stop wearing masks and limiting large gatherings, and then covid flares up again. You have to get the numbers way down, THEN it will go away on its own. Similarly, we’ve never gotten serious about housing for everybody for three decades, and that’s why homelessness is high and rising. Remember the expiring eviction moratoriums? That will lead to more homelessness and tents too, and what are we doing about that?

      4. @Mike, Your narrative isn’t backed up by the numbers. You can go to Wikipedia and there’s a nice chart provided by HUD that shows the peak was in 2018. There was a significant drop in 2019 and 2020 levels are back to those of 2017. If there is a correlation between the economy and the homeless population we should see it drop for 2021 and continue to drop as the economic recovery has created a labor shortage. And during the pandemic there has been an eviction moratorium and generous supplemental Federal unemployment benefits.

      5. The moratorium didn’t prevent all evictions, or cases where the tenant couldn’t pay and left in a variety of circumstances. The heady population increase in 2012-2018 slackened in 2019 and practically stopped in 2020. I’ve written elsewhere about how the problem is the relative level of housing to the population. When Seattle was creating 9 units for every 12 additional jobs as it was during 2012 to 2018, more people were competing for a limited number of units like musical chairs and bit the prices up. When growth slackened and stopped in 2019 and 2020, that pressure was lightened. But covid added a unique factor as there was a massive shutdown of businesses and shopping that has never occurred since at least the 1930s. The number of homeless sleeping outside doubled in 2020 and 2021, otherwise people wouldn’t be pulling their hair out over it and saying Seattle is doomed.

      6. I’m not talking about the economy, I’m talking about the population increase. It’s the population increase that puts pressure on housing.

  12. @Mike,

    You are like Ross and keep pointing to homelessness and don’t look at the big picture of the elections results locally and that there was more then that on why people voted the way they did. My post pointed to the fire and police protection and infrastructure on why I voted the way I did and the results show I was not the only one. People in the city didn’t feel safe and were not happy with particularly the city council in their quest to cut police funding. You both point to homelessness and miss the overall big picture.

    And nationally look at the losses in Virginia and some in the Democratic party don’t get it why those happened as they feel that they were given a mandate in the November 2020 election. No they were not. Yes Biden was elected president because the majority of people wanted Trump out to restore dignity to the office of the president. Look at the results from the last Congressional 2020 election where the Democrats hold only a slim majority in the Senate and actually lost seats in the House. So there was no mandate and if this past Tuesday in Virginia was any indication it could be a disaster in the 2022 Congressional elections for the Democrats. And god help us if Trump runs in 2024 and wins and if that happens I fear for the future of this country.

    Democrats need to understand that the country leans center and maybe slightly left or right and that they want policies that help the majority of people but not programs too far to the left and not cut programs that the right wing want to cut. If the Democrats continue to push too many of their programs it will be an election disaster for them in 2022 and 2024.

    Again look at the local city elections results as there is a message their and the progressives need to grasp that message. And nationally the Democrats need to look at the results from Virginia.

    1. Yes, there’s a factual level and a personal impression level. People vote based on their personal impressions, and those impressions can be inaccurate or influenced by fearmongering propaganda. I was responding to one factual issue that really bothers me, and you’re looking at people’s impressions, which is also important.

      The thing with people feeling unsafe is, the media exacerbates it, and propagandists exploit it to irrational levels. The media reports on one person who was accosted by a homeless person today or walked by a tent cluster, and doesn’t report on the 599,999 people who didn’t. This gives people the impression that things are worse than they are. 95% of Seattle is functioning normally. So the solution is for the media to give a more accurate picture, and to effectively counteract propagandists (not an easy thing, or we would have done it already).

      We don’t really know why one election goes one way, and those who say it was definitely because of a certain thing are probably wrong. I posted about my uncertainty between Gonzalez and Harrell and my partial dissatisfaction with both of them, and the attorney and district 9 races, and I ultimately chose one thing but I might have chosen the other. Bruce Nourish said in the podcast he felt similarly. This is not untypical: people vote for a million different reasons, some of them based on their personal circumstances or how much they know about the candidates or how they’re feeling today. You can’t chalk all that up to “Most people voted for Harrell because of law and order, and they absolutely wouldn’t have voted for Gonzalez”. Some yes, some no, but most are probably in between or voted for different reasons. And many are influenced by what they hear on TV or on Twitter; i.e., spotty reporting or propaganda.

      Likewise, we don’t fully know why Trump won in 2016 and Biden in 2020 and Youngkin in 2021. Trump said Youngkin won because of Trump’s endorsement and the MAGA base, while others say Youngkin won in spite of these. The latter is probably right, but we don’t fully know, or how these people will vote in 2022 and 2024. Seattle’s city council became more progressive in the mid 2010s but less progressive in 2021. Does that mean progressives are advancing or retreating long-term? Will the next local elections be like 2021 or 2016? It’s hard to tell.

      The biggest threat our country faces is that as soon as Republicans gain power in governorships, legislatures, Congress, the presidency, and secretaries of state, they’ll slam the door of democracy behind them. This should worry everybody. And Democrats nationally need to prioritize it, or the next election may be the last election, or at least the last fair election, and in states like Texas and Georgia the last fair election may be in the past.

      I do believe that Democrats and the country as a whole are more moderate than the progressives believe. My mom’s take on Bernie Sanders was, “If he’s nominated he’ll lose in a landslide like McGovern.” I think that’s pretty accurate, and Seattle too isn’t as far left as progressives think. To me it’s natural that Democrats chose Biden in 2020, and Obama in 2016. (And Hillary would have gotten it in 2016 if there hadn’t been Obama to vote for, if there weren’t so many irrational “Never Hillaryers”, and if Comey hadn’t made an announcement about an investigation that turned out to be nothing.)

      The biggest problem with the Congressional Democratic caucus, and the one thing I think Jayapal has done wrong, is refusing to pass the infrastructure bill if the reconciliation bill won’t get a simultaneous vote. You have to take what you can and compromise, not hold up something that might pass. Incrememental improvement is better than nothing, and it’s better to have one thing certainly pass than more things maybe pass. A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.

      Still, throughout all this, it really would be best if we had a Scandinavian-like or somewhat Canadian-like social system, fairer elections, and non-corruption (which would lead to the other two). I see that as a moderate position. And when people say it’s far left, that’s propaganda.

      1. @Mike Orr

        Your comments about the Republicans gaining power are scary and right on as they seemingly don’t care about democracy.

        The same with your comment about the country being more moderate and what your mom said about Bernie Sanders. Both were right on.

        And the same about Jayapal as she and the rest of the progressive group don’t understand compromise. Try to pass the infrastructure bill and then try for the other one later on. And compromise is also a foreign word to the Republicans.

        I am old enough to remember Senators Jackson (D) and Dirksen (R) who were opposites politically but when it came to pass bills that were needed to help the country they worked together something that is sadly missing in Congress today.

        Do the results from Tuesday reflect future elections outcomes both locally and nationally and that is not known but a message was sent.

      2. Likewise, we don’t fully know why Trump won in 2016 and Biden in 2020
        That one’s pretty easy. People hated Hillary more than Trump in 2016 and by the same wide margin they hated Trump more than Joe in 2020. Heck, old Uncle Joe’s a likeable enough guy.

        Youngkin had a huge uphill battle. He seized on a hot button issue and was doing well with it but doubt he could have closed the deal if McAuliffe hadn’t stuck his foot in his mouth just a few days before the election and said something to the effect that parents shouldn’t be telling schools what to teach their kids. Translation to what the public heard, “You deplorable bible clutching guns nuts just need to let Government teach your kids the dogma that lives deep within the teachers union.”

      3. Jayapal has been better than I expected. Sawant endorsed her so I was afraid she’d be all grandstanding and uncooperative, but Jayapal has been a lot more pragmatic and compromising than that. She’s more like Pelosi or Sanders: they have a left-wing reputation and goals, but they work together with others to get practical things done. Her leading the movement to vote against the infrastructure bill if the reconciliation bill isn’t completed at the same time is the only thing I’ve seen that I’d call being non-compromising, and it’s out of character compared to her other behavior in her years in the House. So I hope it doesn’t become a larger pattern with her.

  13. There were two good interviews on TV.

    The first was Michael Steele, former chair of the RNC, on the Brian Williams show.

    Steele pointed out that having known Manchin for 30 years, and heard all the insults and names from progressives, the one term missing is “conservative Democrat”, something Manchin has been for 30 years in a state that voted for Trump in 2020 by 46 points. It is a miracle a Democrat got elected Governor and Senator from W. VA.

    According to Steele, progressives can stop the attacks and pleas and insults. Manchin will not vote for BBB unless it is very small and targeted, and finds it obscene progressives from Blue States insist on repealing the $10,000 cap on SALT. It would be like asking Payapal to vote on a large tax cut. Like Manchin said, if progressives want BBB increase their margins in 2022, rather than rush to pass a bill that will guarantee D’s lose both houses.

    The second interview was with James Carville on CNN. Carville is a big opponent of what he calls the woke faculty lounge progressives who don’t work for a living, who have created a language that instantly turns off suburban and moderate voters.

    He blames the woke wing of the progressive party for the loss in VA, and in the suburbs for D’s, and to make his point he noted that “even in Seattle Washington” the voters elected a Republican city attorney because the progressives nominated a socialist nut.

    1. If progressives want Manchin to vote yes on BBB, then they need to subsidize the coal mines he owns.

      Have you actually looked at how popular the various policies are with WV voters?

      1. Bernie, we can already “make it work”. The problem is that the electricity produced would cost three or four times as much as “renewable” power.

        Now we may need to accept that cost and fold it into rates to have enough base capacity. But don’t think it would be “cheap” like current coal generation. Carbon sequestration takes so much energy that sequestered plants might not have positive output unless they used renewable generation to run the sequestration.

        How crazy would that be?

    2. Pelosi just amended the BBB bill to raise the Salt Cap from $10,000 to $72,000, while adding back in paid leave that will likely allow workers to borrow against their social security or give employers a 100% tax credit.

      I really can’t think of a bigger tax cut for the rich than allowing an additional $62,000 in SALT tax exemptions. For Biden to argue BBB is paid for was dishonest before the massive increase in SALT tax exemptions, and four weeks leave.

      Looks like Trump was the real progressive if you are labor and don’t have $72,000 in SALT taxes because you don’t even itemize, or you got crushed under Obama competing against illegal labor.

      Pelosi plans to pass the BBB despite Manchin’s opposition, and the massive give away to the rich with a $72,000 SALT tax exemption, and her ploy might have worked before last week’s elections.

      Now Pelosi is just making it easier for Manchin and Synema to do what they always planned to do: vote no — or delay forever — any BBB bill.

      I am kind of surprised a pro like Pelosi would play right into Manchin’s hands. One of the biggest opponents of increasing the SALT tax exemption is AOC, so maybe there is a political calculation I am missing. Like make sure BBB dies after last Tuesday’s election, but have others kill it.

      1. 1. The huge tax cut for the wealthy (of “you all just got a lot richer” to the members of Mar-a-Lago), throwing the country into a record setting deficit, says otherwise.

        2. I thought you wanted progressives to negotiate something with conservatives?

        Naturally, the result of all this will be the same as with the ACA: essentially a conservative plan that will only mildly make life better while dumping large amounts of money from working people into wealthy people’s pockets. At the same time it will be posed in the right wing press as a “communist” plan because even after all the Republican led propaganda to make it in line with conservative values, no conservatives will actually vote for it.

      2. I don’t get the SALT tax proposal. I mean, I know it’s going to be popular in Pelosi’s home State and NY & NJ; at least with the rich. Maybe it’s a bone to get that group on board. But the States she needs are AZ and WV. I don’t see this getting many/any R votes since the tax structure in most of those States makes the SALT tax only an issue for a very few individuals. Republicans would more likely support a repeal of SALT to add rather than subtract from federal revenue. But Pelosi is as sharp as they get politically so she must be playing the Queens Gambit.

      3. Pelosi is shrewd. She saved Obamacare when Obama had no idea what he was doing.

        I don’t get her play. Bifurcating the vote on the two bills makes sense, and Biden is desperate for a win, so my guess is she is daring progressives to vote no on the infrastructure bill by making it clear there is no way at this time to pass BBB.

        She pokes Manchin in the eye by putting paid leave back in without even telling him, but then I think she has finally figured out he won’t ever vote for BBB, now that it has become emblematic of government largesse, and then pokes the progressives like AOC — who to her credit is on the record against increasing the SALT tax exemption, which as Bernie notes only benefits blue states and rich people whose reps are already voting yes on BBB.

        If Payapal or AOC voted for a $72,000 SALT exemption they would be ruined among progressives, and as Bernie notes it would give Republicans in poorer states an easy target. Even adding it to BBB makes Democrats look like hypocrites.

        Maybe indexing the the SALT exemption to inflation, or maybe increasing it to $20,000, but $72,000???? Clearly Pelosi is sending a signal. I previously posted a $72,000 SALT exemption made it too easy for Manchin, but like Michael Steale Pelosi now knows Manchin is voting no on any BBB the progressives in the house will support.

        All in all — if you read Trumm’s piece in the Urbanist that of course is devoid of introspection — a bad week for progressives, but probably not as bad as 2022 will be.

        But then progressives went crazy, really beginning with the 2020 riots/protests, so hard to sympathize.

      4. I don’t get her play. Maybe it’s just to buy time. Everyone confused means they won’t make a move and punch the clock. One thing to be sure of; it’s a well calculated move that’s put everyone she needs on their back foot. Almost from the Trump playbook; keep everyone so confused they miss what actually happens. You have to believe Palosi and McConnell are in constant communication. They both know how sausage is made.

      5. “If Payapal or AOC voted for a $72,000 SALT exemption they would be ruined among progressives”

        I don’t think progressives see it that way. They’d probably be OK with it because it benefits very blue states with above-average social safety nets and services (what those state taxes are paying for), and the people who benefit from this tax break tend to vote somewhat liberal.

        I find it odd that a state can take an arbitrary amount of federal income tax for itself, but it has been established for several years and I don’t know how it started. And it benefits basically the best blue states, so they should get some reward for that.

  14. “The thing with people feeling unsafe is, the media exacerbates it, and propagandists exploit it to irrational levels.”

    I think people on the other side also tend to apologize for the rising crime and violence. Thinking only about my neighborhood I can think of 2-3 murders within 10 blocks of my house involving firearms as well as see the tents in the park and the fires along the 2-3 encampments all within the last year. This is not normal or media exaggeration and definitely influenced my vote.

    1. Considering the police mostly show up after a crime has been committed, how will the policies of the new mayor reduce any of these problems?

      1. By increasing the number of officers you can again have a police presence on the street (the beat cop) that gets to know the people and what’s going down. Right now the police aren’t even showing up after some crimes and the long response times make it that much harder to catch someone. Ideally they get there while the crime is still in progress.

        I don’t think Harrell has anything against determining where an armed response isn’t necessary (or desirable) and adding responders that aren’t sworn officers can free up police to concentrate on where they are needed.

        Bottom line, if you want something better you usually have to pay more. You can’t wait for the 50% off sale to fund the police department. From where things are it shouldn’t be hard to improve. The challenge will be to get the Council to stop making it worse.

  15. Today’s ballot drop was release. The gap for mayor has closed to 24 points. City Attorney is 11. Moscada has a comfortable 12 point lead that continues to grow. Nelson has a 15 point lead which I think is also getting larger. There’s just not enough ballots still out to change any of these races.

    1. The state elections site suggested that about 25% of the received ballots remain to be counted as of Friday morning. It appears almost impossible to reverse a double digit gap at this point. For these big races, the choice has been made.

      1. Agreed. The Friday update is out, and the gap has narrowed pretty significantly for some of these races, but there don’t seem to be enough votes left to count for the end result to flip.

  16. Some (at least one) Port of Seattle race have actually reversed given the late count preference to liberal candidates.

  17. Not directly election related, but the results of past elections:

    Seattle Waterfront sent out a message today about transit lanes on Alaskan Way, pedestrian changes to Pike / Pine, and a few other street changes. I’ve not found a web version of the message.

  18. What? Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler holds press conference to call for halt to defunding police, and call for funding for 200 new officers due to endless anarchy in city.

    Good luck. What police officer would want to work in Portland when the anarchy is so entrenched by now it will be nearly impossible to eradicate, especially with Wheeler and a Prosecutor like Thomas-Kennedy who doesn’t believe in prosecuting crime.

    It was a mistake for Portland residents to re-elect Wheeler. That was their last chance to reverse the anarchy. Portland has few natural advantages after the decline in its port, except its funky charm. Most don’t find crime and anarchy “funky”.

    Although I doubt Harrell will be able to reverse course in Seattle, at least Seattle voters made clear the direction they want the city to go. IMO a choice between Harrell and Gonzales is not the choice residents needed. It is like a choice between Davison and Thomas-Kennedy in which Davison looks like a law and order prosecutor in comparison to someone who opposes all law and order.

    Unfortunately Seattle has lost 300 police officers — and the existing police are demoralized and are on a quiet strike — and those will very difficult to replace, although under Gonzales and/or Thomas-Kennedy it would have been impossible.

    1. It was a mistake for Portland residents to re-elect Wheeler.
      The opponent in the last election was an avowed anarchist. There really wasn’t a choice. I haven’t heard that Portland was having as big of a problem as Seattle in retaining officers. The question is who would want to be mayor of Portland (except aforementioned anarchist).

  19. If you are surprised about Seattle’s results, you live in a ultra Leftist, distorted bubble.

    I am a Liberal and not one bit surprised Progressives in Seattle all got kicked out, and you see the same wave of fury and anger across the county. (A truck driver in New Jersey has beaten State Senate President, the second most powerful Democrat in the country , after spending $153 on his campaign.)

    BS non-workable ideas like defunding the police, indoctrinating kids with the controversial Critical Race Theory, Progressives hijacking bipartisan infrastructure bill, abolitionist publicly running for election and calling for property destruction and no prosecution of crimes.

    Are you kidding me? Have you gone insane? I am very disappointed in Joe Biden: the voters basically voted him in just so that they don’t see Trump’s face on TV every day, Biden thinks he is FDR… Drop these ultra Leftist ideas and go back to build transits, fix schools for underprivileged, improve Obamacare please.

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