NPI's Cascadia Advocate

Offering commentary and analysis from Washington, Oregon, and Idaho, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's uplifting perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Tuesday, August 6th, 2013

Matchup appears set in Seattle mayor’s race: It’ll be Ed Murray versus Mike McGinn

Win­now­ing elec­tion night is final­ly here.

Sev­er­al weeks after vot­ing began, the dead­line to turn in bal­lots has arrived, and the first results are com­ing in. All eyes, fig­u­ra­tive­ly speak­ing, are on the state’s largest city, which has the elec­tion’s mar­quee race: a nine-way con­test for mayor.

Only two of the nine will be mov­ing for­ward to the Novem­ber runoff, and at this point it looks like those two can­di­dates will be Demo­c­ra­t­ic State Sen­a­tor Ed Mur­ray and incum­bent May­or Mike McGinn, who polls showed had the lead back in July.

As of just after 8:15 PM, Mur­ray’s share of the vote was 30.24%, with McGinn a few points behind at 27.15%. (See more num­bers at NPI’s Pacif­ic NW Por­tal).

Com­ing in third and fourth place were Peter Stein­brueck and Bruce Har­rell, one a for­mer mem­ber of the Seat­tle City Coun­cil and the oth­er a cur­rent mem­ber. The two of them have more than thir­ty per­cent of the vote com­bined. But indi­vid­u­al­ly, they’re both more than ten points behind McGinn.

The rest of the field — Char­lie Staadeck­er, Joey Gray, Kate Mar­tin, Mary Mar­tin, and Doug McQuaid — are all in the sin­gle digits.

At his Elec­tion Night par­ty at Chi­na Har­bor, Stein­brueck urged sup­port­ers to keep the faith, not­ing many bal­lots left to be count­ed. He was even intro­duced as “the next may­or of Seat­tle.” But Stein­brueck is very far behind McGinn… he would need a huge wave to car­ry him past the incum­bent, and that just does­n’t seem likely.

Peter Steinbrueck

Third place fin­ish­er Peter Stein­brueck speaks to sup­port­ers short­ly after the pub­li­ca­tion of the first results in the 2013 may­oral race. (Pho­to: Andrew Villeneuve/NPI)

Stein­brueck­’s sup­port­ers began crowd­ing around a pro­jec­tion screen moments after the first and only results of the night were post­ed. But the returns gave them no cause for cel­e­bra­tion. Stein­brueck took to the stage short­ly after­wards, cheer­ful­ly thank­ing his vol­un­teers and try­ing to strike an opti­mistic tone.

Mur­ray and his sup­port­ers, cel­e­brat­ing at The Croc­o­dile in Bell­town, were jubi­lant. Mur­ray deliv­ered a well-received vic­to­ry speech with his fam­i­ly and friends at his side. Seat­tle City Coun­cilmem­ber Tim Burgess, a for­mer rival of Mur­ray and McGin­n’s, was on the stage, as were City Attor­ney Pete Holmes and State Rep­re­sen­ta­tive Cyrus Habib of the 48th LD.

Mur­ray pledged, if elect­ed, to appoint more women to lead­er­ship posi­tions in City Hall, and pro­nounced him­self ready for a live­ly autumn cam­paign with McGinn.

Ed Murray

State Sen­a­tor Ed Mur­ray deliv­ers his vic­to­ry speech after ini­tial results showed him in the lead in the 2013 may­or’s race. (Pho­to: Andrew Villeneuve/NPI)

“I’m not run­ning to be a gay may­or of Seat­tle… I’m not run­ning to be a pro­gres­sive may­or of Seat­tle… I’m run­ning to be an effec­tive may­or!” he told his supporters.

Mur­ray has the sup­port of much of the city and the state’s Demo­c­ra­t­ic estab­lish­ment. He picked up endorse­ments from most of the city’s Demo­c­ra­t­ic leg­isla­tive dis­trict orga­ni­za­tions, and promi­nent for­mer office­hold­ers like Gov­er­nor Chris Gre­goire have held events on his behalf.

McGinn and his sup­port­ers, mean­while, were upbeat, cel­e­brat­ing the May­or’s sub­stan­tial lead over all of his rivals except Mur­ray. Their par­ty, at Capi­tol Hill’s 95 Slide, was still going strong late into the night.

Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn speaks at 95 Slide on Capitol Hill following the release of initial results. (Photo: NPI)

Seat­tle May­or Mike McGinn speaks at 95 Slide on Capi­tol Hill fol­low­ing the release of ini­tial results. (Pho­to: NPI)

Sev­er­al McGinn sup­port­ers I talked to made a point of call­ing the night a huge vic­to­ry over The Seat­tle Times, which they say has spent three and a half years try­ing to bring down McGin­n’s administration.

(The Times has a noto­ri­ous his­to­ry of endors­ing Repub­li­cans for statewide and fed­er­al office; it backed Rob McKen­na and Rea­gan Dunn last year).

Ahead of the elec­tion, many observers won­dered if McGinn would share the fate of Greg Nick­els and Paul Schell, who were oust­ed by chal­lengers in the 2001 and 2009 win­now­ing elec­tions. But McGin­n’s sup­port­ers tell me they always had faith that they’d be able to mount a win­ning campaign.

McGinn vol­un­teers say they’re ener­gized to reelect Mike because they want a city that has great mass tran­sit, safe neigh­bor­hoods, good schools, and a com­mit­ment to com­bat­ing the cli­mate cri­sis. They’re look­ing for­ward to the fall cam­paign, which promis­es to be a fierce and no-holds barred matchup with Ed Murray.

But tonight, they’re cel­e­brat­ing, because Mike McGinn is mov­ing on to the final round in his bid for a sec­ond term as May­or of Seattle.

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  1. We’re in for a real race! Hope all the can­di­dates join us for NPI’s annu­al Sum­mer Pic­nic on August 22nd!

    # by Gael Tarleton :: August 6th, 2013 at 11:14 PM
  2. This does­n’t fol­low from the above arti­cle, but I do firm­ly believe that if Rus­sia con­tin­ues its homo­pho­bic poli­cies then the US should cer­tain­ly boy­cott the games.

    # by Charles Etheridge :: August 11th, 2013 at 2:57 AM

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