NPI's Cascadia Advocate

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

Wednesday, June 30th, 2021

Andrew Grant Houston talks with NPI about his 2021 candidacy for Mayor of Seattle

Andrew Grant Hous­ton (known as “Ace the Archi­tect” on Twit­ter) is the youngest per­son run­ning for May­or of Seat­tle in 2021 and, going by fundrais­ing met­rics, one of the can­di­dates best posi­tioned to con­nect with vot­ers this summer.

An archi­tect by trade, Hous­ton is run­ning as a stan­dard bear­er for Seattle’s large and vibrant activist com­mu­ni­ty on an ambi­tious, unapolo­get­i­cal­ly pro­gres­sive  plat­form. On June 14th, Hous­ton and I dis­cussed his cam­paign for mayor.

This tran­script has been light­ly edit­ed for clarity.

Ruairi Vaugh­an, Ever­green State Elec­toral Ana­lyst (NPI): I’d like to start by dig­ging into your back sto­ry a lit­tle bit. A year and a half ago, you had just turned thir­ty and were run­ning an archi­tec­ture firm. Fast for­ward to today, you’re run­ning for May­or of Seat­tle and you’ve out-fundraised all but one of your rival can­di­dates, rais­ing a third of a mil­lion dol­lars or more from small-dol­lar donors. 

Walk me through how that happened.

Andrew Grant Hous­ton: Well, I think a big part of it is, espe­cial­ly being a per­son of col­or and exist­ing in the Unit­ed States, you learn very ear­ly on that if you’re going to get any­where you need to work twice as hard as every­one else, if not three times as hard. So some­thing that I have real­ly learned and ben­e­fit­ed from – espe­cial­ly in start­ing my own busi­ness – is real­ly under­stand­ing the sys­tems that are at play and being able to real­ly take advan­tage of them.

So we have the new democ­ra­cy vouch­er pro­gram – well it’s not new new, but this is the first may­oral elec­tion where you can actu­al­ly use them – and being able to under­stand the process and fundraise has been real­ly straightforward.

But there’s also being real­ly clear about what I stand for and what I want to get done as may­or. I think espe­cial­ly giv­en the cur­rent sit­u­a­tion in Seat­tle, where we have a May­or that has either kicked the can on a num­ber of dif­fer­ent issues, and delayed and stalled, or wait­ed until the last minute and then cho­sen some­thing that was against what the community’s wish­es were.

There’s a huge demand for a dif­fer­ent kind of leadership.

And so, by show­ing up and being very clear about how I am dras­ti­cal­ly dif­fer­ent from the cur­rent may­or, I have seen a lot of support.

Andrew Grant Houston is the youngest candidate for mayor of Seattle.

Andrew Grant Hous­ton is the youngest can­di­date for may­or of Seat­tle. (Pho­to cour­tesy of The Ris­ing Tide campaign)

RV: You’re not only dif­fer­ent from the cur­rent May­or, but you’re also quite dif­fer­ent from the oth­er can­di­dates: you’re sig­nif­i­cant­ly younger, you have also very much empha­sized the fact that you don’t have a house, you don’t own a car, you can’t dri­ve, use tran­sit, and you’re a renter. Why do you think it’s impor­tant that the next may­or under­stands the per­spec­tives of non-home­­own­ers, renters, tran­sit users — peo­ple like you?

AGH: I would say for two rea­sons. One is that we are a major­i­ty renter city. We are a major­i­ty non-car own­ing city, and when it comes to pri­or­i­tiz­ing those who not only make up the major­i­ty of our city but also lack access and abil­i­ty, that it’s impor­tant to either have that lived expe­ri­ence or real­ly focus on lift­ing up those who do have the least, because they are the most impact­ed by our policies.

I think the oth­er rea­son, and real­ly the main rea­son that I’m run­ning right now, is that these kinds of changes towards what I would say is the lifestyle that I am lead­ing right now are nec­es­sary if we are going to address the cli­mate crisis.

What we have been doing as a city has been some­what okay for a while on a num­ber of dif­fer­ent issues, but it hasn’t been enough.

We’re still deal­ing with the home­less­ness cri­sis, and when it comes to the cli­mate cri­sis, our emis­sions in Seat­tle have actu­al­ly gone up in the past few years, as opposed to what it was before!

So we need to now make dras­tic changes, but I feel like I am in many ways an exam­ple of how some­one can live a sus­tain­able life and still enjoy Seattle.

RV: You said that the city’s poli­cies have been “some­what okay” for a while. As for your poli­cies — first­ly, there’s just a lot of them!

AGH: Yeah!

RV: I’d encour­age our read­ers to go to your web­site and read them. We don’t have time to go through every sin­gle one, but could you give me a sum­ma­ry of the four main group­ings that you have on your cam­paign web­site: Stay in Seat­tle, Revi­sion Zero, Clean Tech Cap­i­tal, and For­est City Vil­lage City. Could you give me a sum­ma­ry of why you group them in these categories?

AGH: It real­ly start­ed with this vision I laid out and worked on with oth­er orga­niz­ers about what the city should look like in 2100. Work­ing back­wards from there, what are the main changes you need to make in the next eight years (so, the next two may­oral terms) in order to move towards that tra­jec­to­ry? The four plans are real­ly a com­pi­la­tion of a num­ber of com­mu­ni­ty asks, so things that the com­mu­ni­ty has either been advo­cat­ing for or also came from a num­ber of sup­port­ers who then sub­mit­ted their own ideas as to what the pol­i­cy steps should be.

The four main cat­e­gories address four main issues which are the afford­abil­i­ty cri­sis; peo­ple just being able to afford to stay in the city, so the Stay in Seat­tle Plan.

With Revi­sion Zero, it’s the city’s com­mit­ment to the Vision Zero pol­i­cy and not mak­ing any progress towards that vision, which is sup­posed to be zero pre­ventable deaths. I have reframed it, which is why it’s “revi­sion” towards zero pre­ventable deaths includ­ing those that are from state-spon­­sored violence.

With the Clean Tech Cap­i­tal Plan, it is focused on our need to take advan­tage of our pow­er as a tech hub, by see­ing the oppor­tu­ni­ty for invest­ing in sus­tain­able tech­nol­o­gy and real­ly being at the cen­ter of that in the Unit­ed States, because there cur­rent­ly is not one. I want to to bring in com­mu­ni­ty to that in order to be part of the solution.

And the last one, For­est City Vil­lage City, is real­ly aim­ing towards the fif­teen minute city ide­al and the con­cept of more sus­tain­able neigh­bor­hoods and com­mu­ni­ties – but mak­ing it very clear that as we start to make Seat­tle more into a city of vil­lages, we can also pre­serve and actu­al­ly increase our amount of nat­ur­al envi­ron­ment in the city.

RV: Thanks for that sum­ma­ry. I think a lot of Seat­tleites will [be intrigued by] that vision, and a part of the rea­son why is because Seat­tle has his­tor­i­cal­ly been ahead of the curve. A big part of why we’ve been ahead of the curve is due to the city’s eco­nom­ic prowess – aero­space, tech, etc. As May­or, what new indus­tries would you seek to attract to Seat­tle, and how would you use your posi­tion to go about doing that?

AGH: I am real­ly think­ing about the cir­cu­lar econ­o­my and how we build on what we have here local­ly to be able to sus­tain ourselves.

In my mind, that is where part of the Clean Tech Cap­i­tal ide­al comes from.

King Coun­ty is the coun­ty in Wash­ing­ton State with the most jobs relat­ed to tim­ber and forestry and as we move towards the need to not just build a sig­nif­i­cant amount of hous­ing – because we are def­i­nite­ly in a hous­ing deficit – but do so in a way that is much more sustainable.

We need to be rely­ing on wood, and I see this as a real­ly great oppor­tu­ni­ty to be able to improve forest­ing prac­tices and be able to increase the num­ber of jobs relat­ed to tim­ber, which are real­ly good, liv­ing-wage, union jobs.

RV: The Biden qdmin­is­tra­tion seems a lot more open than its pre­de­ces­sor to spend­ing on green tech­nol­o­gy, sus­tain­able indus­try and clean ener­gy; how would you make sure that fed­er­al dol­lars are com­ing Seattle’s way, rather than oth­er cities?

AGH: I think we already do a real­ly good job at this, par­tic­u­lar­ly when it comes to trans­porta­tion. We are one of the few munic­i­pal­i­ties to receive mul­ti­ple TIGER grants, which are relat­ed to trans­porta­tion and infra­struc­ture projects.

For me, it is using our fed­er­al del­e­ga­tion of rep­re­sen­ta­tives and our sen­a­tors to real­ly push for a much high­er lev­el of investment.

As a mem­ber of the Sun­rise Move­ment, and now also a mem­ber of the Work­ing Fam­i­lies Par­ty, we have been advo­cat­ing for the THRIVE Act, which would invest $1 tril­lion in infra­struc­ture for the next ten years, rec­og­niz­ing that we need a true Green New Deal. We need a New Deal that is focused on sus­tain­able tech­nol­o­gy, on clean tech, on rebuild­ing a lot of the infra­struc­ture that we cre­at­ed back in the for­ties and fifties. It’s not just Seat­tle, but it’s so many cities across the U.S. that need sig­nif­i­cant invest­ment that can only come through fed­er­al dollars.

So, real­ly just mak­ing the case for that, but also that is one of the rea­sons that I am run­ning specif­i­cal­ly in this moment, because we need to be mak­ing those invest­ments but it’s also imper­a­tive to have a local exec­u­tive who is focused on actu­al­ly get­ting those dol­lars out the door and exe­cut­ing those projects.

I bring a lot of project man­age­ment expe­ri­ence from archi­tec­ture, and man­ag­ing mul­ti-bil­lion dol­lar invest­ments on behalf of our community.

So for me, I find that to be extreme­ly crit­i­cal as we move through and actu­al­ly get­ting these projects done and imple­ment­ing them.

RV: Part of project man­age­ment is deal­ing with mul­ti­ple actors. One of the things that the cur­rent admin­is­tra­tion strug­gles with is the rela­tion­ship with the City Coun­cil. You report­ed on coun­cil meet­ings and worked for Coun­cilmem­ber Tere­sa Mosqueda. 

How would you approach the rela­tion­ship, and what do you think the cur­rent admin­is­tra­tion could have done but did not do?

AGH: I think there’s a lot of things they could have done, but chose not to do – so I’m going to focus on what I would like to do, which is real empowerment.

What I expe­ri­enced when work­ing for Coun­cilmem­ber Mosque­da is that every­one work­ing in the leg­isla­tive branch is real­ly focused on improv­ing the city and on mak­ing change. There are a lot of peo­ple with a lot of great inten­tions, so it’s real­ly about find­ing those com­mon­al­i­ties, and find­ing those projects that they real­ly want to work on that they need capac­i­ty for; one of the biggest chal­lenges that we had, even dur­ing my short time there, was that it was so dif­fi­cult to get any work done because we had so few staff.

The branch that has tons of staffing capac­i­ty is the exec­u­tive! So it’s real­ly about iden­ti­fy­ing where there are shared com­mon inter­ests and being able to move those projects for­ward – work­ing with the Coun­cil and through the Coun­cil, our larg­er com­mu­ni­ty, to be able to be part of the solu­tions that we need right now.

RV: It’s going to take more than just a good rela­tion­ship with the City Coun­cil to imple­ment plans on the scale you are envi­sion­ing; how do you plan to inter­act with non-city bod­ies and agen­cies like the Port of Seat­tle and King County?

AGH: It’s real­ly about high­light­ing those nec­es­sary steps and see­ing where the pow­er lies. That is some­thing I have done for a long time, espe­cial­ly as an orga­niz­er. When it comes to bring­ing in com­­mu­ni­­ty-based orga­ni­za­tions and oth­er actors, I’m less con­cerned about that.

To your point about the Port and Coun­ty, I think in many ways it is about lin­ing up the data that is already there and real­ly explain­ing the rea­sons behind actions.

I know that is def­i­nite­ly going to be the case when it comes to the King Coun­ty Region­al Home­less­ness Author­i­ty and try­ing to make that more of an active par­tic­i­pant in address­ing our cur­rent crisis.

But, the data is already there, it’s real­ly about con­nect­ing the dots and show­ing how we can improve sys­tems in order to improve out­comes for everyone.

RV: As well as the data, it ral­ly helps to have rela­tion­ships with the peo­ple involved in these struc­tures. Do you have rela­tion­ships with the port com­mis­sion­ers, King Coun­ty Coun­cil, or the Executive?

AGH: I do have some.

One of the port com­mis­sion­ers is a men­tor of mine, his name is Ryan Calkins.

I’m also watch­ing a lot of the oth­er races that are hap­pen­ing and engag­ing with those can­di­dates as well. And when it comes to the Coun­ty, I have had some engage­ment with Coun­cilmem­ber [Gir­may] Zahi­lay. So yes, I do have some rela­tion­ships, and in many ways I am some­one who wants to build more rela­tion­ships, have more dia­logue and real­ly get through the nit­ty grit­ty of things. I find myself pret­ty suc­cess­ful at mak­ing friend­ships with most peo­ple. I don’t have a lot of con­cern when it comes to being able to work togeth­er to get things done.

RV: Let’s move on to the biggest issues fac­ing Seat­tle, and I’ll be blunt: how do we fix the home­less­ness crisis?

AGH: It’s going to be an all hands on deck approach.

Like what we were dis­cussing ear­li­er, we do need fed­er­al invest­ment when it comes to per­ma­nent­ly afford­able hous­ing. One of the biggest chal­lenges that I remem­ber from Coun­cilmem­ber Mosque­da was hav­ing con­ver­sa­tions at the coun­ty lev­el about want­i­ng to cre­ate or pre­serve 44,000 afford­able units, because that’s what the coun­ty taskforce’s goal is. And the cost for that was going to be $18 bil­lion. So it is less of an issue of know­ing what we need to do and it’s more of an issue of where the fund­ing is going to come from.

The oth­er thing that I am real­ly focused on is address­ing the cri­sis at hand, while also pre­vent­ing addi­tion­al peo­ple from enter­ing into homelessness.

One of the biggest ways we can do that right now is get­ting the Gov­er­nor and the May­or to extend the evic­tion mora­to­ri­um [Gov­er­nor Jay Inslee announced a “bridge” peri­od for the state’s evic­tion mora­to­ri­um on June 24th].

If they don’t do that, we’re going to increase the num­ber of peo­ple expe­ri­enc­ing home­less­ness and it’s just going to make things worse.

The oth­er things that I want to focus on in terms of when I enter office are also land use form, so that hous­ing can be cre­at­ed much more rapid­ly and more cost effec­tive­ly, because the high­est costs for any type of con­struc­tion right now is the land cost. And when we do that, we are hav­ing devel­op­ers then pay into our manda­to­ry hous­ing affordability.

By doing that, they are going to bring in more dol­lars for afford­able hous­ing, so we can then build per­ma­nent afford­able hous­ing and per­ma­nent sup­port­ive hous­ing that is need­ed. There’s a lot of pieces, dude, but it is def­i­nite­ly some­thing I have thought of a lot, espe­cial­ly as a hous­ing activist.

RV: Anoth­er issue, one that com­plete­ly dom­i­nat­ed last year, is polic­ing. The Coun­cil vot­ed to reduce the fund­ing of the Seat­tle Police Depart­ment. What do you think about that deci­sion? Would you have done the same, would you have done it dif­fer­ent­ly, and how will you approach this as mayor?

AGH: If I had been on the Coun­cil at the same time, I would not have made the same com­mit­ment to fifty per­cent, because I don’t make emp­ty promises.

Some­thing that I respect – even though it was very frus­trat­ing – was Coun­cilmem­ber [Deb­o­rah] Juarez stat­ing “I don’t believe we can move this quick­ly in that short an amount of time,” which is a very fair point.

Part of that is because there is so much obfus­ca­tion and hir­ing of infor­ma­tion and data from the police depart­ment, that only the exec­u­tive can address.

That’s why it’s also imper­a­tive that if we are plan­ning on defund­ing SPD by fifty per­cent or any amount, we need to have an exec­u­tive who’s going to hold the depart­ment account­able and make the much more trans­par­ent about how they are actu­al­ly spend­ing their money.

One of the biggest pieces of data that has real­ly res­onat­ed with me was look­ing at the increase in spend­ing from 2015 until last year, see­ing that there was essen­tial­ly zero increase in the num­ber of sworn officers.

So, clear­ly that mon­ey is going to either mil­i­ta­riza­tion of the police, exces­sive over­time when we should actu­al­ly just be hir­ing oth­er offi­cers, or just float­ing into the ether of the police department.

It’s hard to tell, because even if you look at the 2021 pro­posed bud­get, the amount of infor­ma­tion that’s com­ing and is item­ized by all the dif­fer­ent parts of the depart­ment is almost nil. So part of it is get­ting in as an exec­u­tive and try­ing to uncov­er what exact­ly the mon­ey is being used for.

I think a big ques­tion is going to be once the next may­or takes office, how many offi­cers are still left? I know that a num­ber of offi­cers, once they heard that their pay could be reduced, or once they heard that there were going to be increased account­abil­i­ty mea­sures, decid­ed to leave or decid­ed to retire.

That is a big ques­tion for me; how much mon­ey does the police depart­ment actu­al­ly need in order to ful­fill its oblig­a­tions for those who are cur­rent­ly staffed?

RV: A big part of the next mayor’s respon­si­bil­i­ty is going to be choos­ing the new police chief. With what you said in mind, espe­cial­ly think­ing about SPD offi­cers being dis­grun­tled with the city’s exec­u­tive lead­er­ship, how would you plan to go about choos­ing a new chief for those officers?

AGH: So with this, like any oth­er pro­pos­al, I am real­ly focus­ing on under­stand­ing the cur­rent sys­tem and how we can actu­al­ly build a new system.

For me, that involves look­ing into whether or not the chief of police actu­al­ly needs to be a sworn offi­cer – whether it could actu­al­ly be some­one who comes from our com­mu­ni­ty police com­mis­sion or anoth­er orga­ni­za­tion that has been focused on empha­siz­ing pub­lic safe­ty in ways that aren’t sim­ply armed responses.

That would be my first priority.

The oth­er one is rec­og­niz­ing that, as much as I am inter­est­ed in pub­lic safe­ty mea­sures that are not police, we still need to reform the cur­rent sys­tem because there is a lot of bad blood and ill will between the police and the community.

If we are ever going to get to a point where the police depart­ment can be a trust­ed part of the com­mu­ni­ty again (which it has not been for many decades, which has result­ed in the con­sent decree that was imple­ment­ed) then we need to have an exhaus­tive over­haul. So I am look­ing for a chief who is com­mit­ted to that, and to devel­op­ing a new vision of what polic­ing could mean in this next decade.

RV: You’re a small busi­ness own­er, and a lot of peo­ple com­ing to pol­i­tics with that back­ground use that expe­ri­ence to advo­cate for con­ser­v­a­tive poli­cies – you’re not on that level.

AGH:[Laugh­ing] Def­i­nite­ly not!

RV: How did your small busi­ness expe­ri­ence flow into the quite rad­i­cal pro­pos­als that you are putting for­ward for the city?

AGH: Part of it is that my mind­set when it comes to any­thing is real­ly a mind­set of look­ing at abun­dance. We are a com­mu­ni­ty that has such a huge wealth of knowl­edge, resources, and mon­ey, yet we have so many sys­tems that pre­vent that mon­ey, cap­i­tal, and access being equi­tably distributed.

For myself, it real­ly came down to want­i­ng to get involved in pol­i­tics because of my effort to try and do my job! It is extreme­ly hard to be an archi­tect focused on mul­ti-fam­i­­ly hous­ing when I can­not get a per­mit (it takes months to get one), I have to go through the design review process (which arguably takes years).

I even have projects I worked on at oth­er firms in Seat­tle which have yet to be con­struct­ed because they are stuck in appeals, and all this is while we have thou­sands of peo­ple cur­rent­ly unshel­tered or unhoused in our community.

It’s real­ly about tak­ing that expe­ri­ence and try­ing to work through the sys­tem right now, rec­og­niz­ing that the sys­tem has cre­at­ed so many of the issues that we cur­rent­ly deal with, but tak­ing that exper­tise and being able to reverse engi­neer to cre­ate a new sys­tem that works for all of us.

RV: Along­side your small busi­ness back­ground, you also come from the activist com­mu­ni­ty, which is very well-rep­re­sen­t­ed here in Seat­tle. I have seen you say that one of the impe­tus­es for your may­oral run was see­ing that nobody in the activist com­mu­ni­ty was step­ping for­ward at the time you declared. What con­ver­sa­tions did you have that led you to think that it had to be you or it wouldn’t be anyone?

AGH: Hon­est­ly, it was a num­ber of con­ver­sa­tions with peo­ple that I real­ly want­ed to run for may­or, and they said no.

They said they weren’t inter­est­ed, and there were some oth­ers that said that they would do it if absolute­ly no one else did, but that they had already run for oth­er posi­tions. These were oth­er peo­ple of col­or and queer indi­vid­u­als who have already done a lot for Seat­tle, and I didn’t nec­es­sar­i­ly want to be in a mind­set of ask­ing them again to be the rep­re­sen­ta­tive for all of us.

I said that I have all this knowl­edge and exper­tise, espe­cial­ly relat­ing to hous­ing, and so let me use that as a plat­form, and if oth­er peo­ple end up run­ning for a more left­ist, more social­ist side, then go for it! But no one else decid­ed to, so in many ways it’s a lit­tle odd being out here on my own for some of these poli­cies that I have pro­posed. But if any­thing I think that has real­ly brought peo­ple togeth­er, rec­og­niz­ing that if we are going to make the deci­sive change that we need in this city, then I am the can­di­date to support.

I don’t take that lightly.

I have def­i­nite­ly been focused on engag­ing with com­mu­ni­ties in a num­ber of dif­fer­ent ways, even before I was run­ning, so it is extreme­ly crit­i­cal to me that they under­stand that I am here to be respon­sive and to include them in the deci­sion mak­ing process, but that we are going to be act­ing very quickly.

RV: You’ve also put a lot of empha­sis – in inter­views, your cam­paign lit­er­a­ture, else­where – on being a may­or who is in for eight years. Why do you think it is impor­tant to keep going back to this eight years number?

AGH: I bring it up for two reasons…or actu­al­ly three rea­sons, to be honest!

This first is that in order to achieve our cli­mate goals, we must reduce our emis­sions by at least half by 2030. That means that we should ide­al­ly have just one exec­u­tive to car­ry out that plan in that amount of time.

The oth­er com­mit­ment that has been made by the Coun­cil is that we are sup­posed to get to zero emis­sions by 2030. I have not made that com­mit­ment, just because I rec­og­nize that we need to get through a first term and make sig­nif­i­cant reduc­tions first of all, before I can say yes, we can get to zero. But, by the same token, if we are going to be not just a sus­tain­able city, but a leader on cli­mate action, then we need to get start­ed now, because we are clear­ly very behind!

The sec­ond rea­son is we have already had three may­ors who have served one term, and I feel like that has not been effec­tive in terms of mak­ing sig­nif­i­cant impacts on any of our crises. We declared a home­less­ness emer­gency in 2015, it was a prob­lem before then, and it con­tin­ues to be a prob­lem, hav­ing only increased. If we are actu­al­ly going to make sig­nif­i­cant inroads then we need to have some­one who is actu­al­ly focused on the long term vision.

A lot of the changes that I am propos­ing are not going to hap­pen overnight. These are things that need two or three years in order to actu­al­ly get the leg­is­la­tion through make the changes hap­pen, and only after that will we begin to see results.

And the last rea­son is that there is at least one can­di­date in this race who I know is much more inter­est­ed in a statewide posi­tion; so I am mak­ing it very clear that I am com­mit­ted to this posi­tion, and I am going to be in this posi­tion for at least eight years, because I find it absolute­ly nec­es­sary if we are actu­al­ly going to make an effort. I am not using this as a plat­form for statewide position.

RV: You’re going to get to the end of eight years, and at that point you’ll still be under forty. What are you going to do with the rest of your life?

AGH: Ide­al­ly, get back into archi­tec­ture! It’s what I love to do, and if it wasn’t so hard to do what I love, then I would not be run­ning in the first place.

I take heart in know­ing that with archi­tec­ture, because it is a prac­tice, many peo­ple don’t get into their stride until they’re into their fifties, so I will have plen­ty of time in my life to be able to design and build amaz­ing structures.

RV: This entire inter­view has already kind of answered this ques­tion, but what would you say to peo­ple who say that May­or Durkan’s prob­lem was that she didn’t have a grip of city pol­i­tics, and the last thing we need is anoth­er inex­pe­ri­enced person?

AGH: Well, that’s not real­ly who she was!

She was some­one who was sup­posed to improve the police depart­ment using her expe­ri­ence as a pros­e­cu­tor, and that hasn’t hap­pened. She was sup­posed to work with fed­er­al part­ners from her time under the Oba­ma admin­is­tra­tion, and that didn’t not hap­pen – and even now with Biden, that has con­tin­ued to not happen!

So, I think it is impor­tant to real­ly under­stand what peo­ple are propos­ing, what is nec­es­sary, and if those pro­pos­als are actu­al­ly tru­ly effective.

That is why all of my poli­cies and plans have such clear­ly out­lined goals and infor­ma­tion. It is because I rec­og­nize that, yes, a lot of ques­tions are, “Why are you run­ning if you have so much less expe­ri­ence than these oth­er sev­en people?”

The coun­ter­point to that is that, for many of these peo­ple, just because they have expe­ri­ence, it doesn’t mean it’s good experience.

The expe­ri­ence I have is the kind of expe­ri­ence we’ll need if we want to actu­al­ly be the kind of Seat­tle that we always say we are. That is what I am focused on.

RV: Andrew, thanks for your time.

Vot­ing in the August 2021 Top Two elec­tion will begin in under two months, with bal­lots due back by 8 PM on August 3rd, 2021. The top two vote get­ting can­di­dates will advance to the Novem­ber gen­er­al election.

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