Mayor of Seattle poll finding, 2021
A visual of NPI's poll finding for Mayor of Seattle, 2021

For­mer Seat­tle City Coun­cilmem­ber Bruce Har­rell and cur­rent Seat­tle City Coun­cil Pres­i­dent Lore­na González are the cur­rent top two can­di­dates in the Emer­ald City’s 2021 field of fif­teen may­oral con­tenders, with a plu­ral­i­ty unde­cid­ed, a new poll con­duct­ed this week for the North­west Pro­gres­sive Insti­tute has found.

20% of 617 like­ly 2021 Top Two vot­ers in Seat­tle said they were vot­ing for Har­rell, while 12% said they were vot­ing for González. 10% said they were vot­ing for Colleen Echohawk, 6% said they were vot­ing for Jessyn Far­rell, and anoth­er 6% said they were vot­ing for Andrew Grant Hous­ton. 4% said they were vot­ing for Casey Sixkiller and anoth­er 4% said they were vot­ing for Arthur Langlie.

3% said they were vot­ing for Lance Ran­dall and 1% said they were vot­ing for James Don­ald­son. Anoth­er 1% said they were vot­ing for Bob­by Tucker.

The oth­er can­di­dates — Omari Tahir-Gar­rett, Clin­ton Bliss, Hen­ry Den­ni­son, Stan Lipp­mann, and Don Rivers — did not receive any sup­port in the survey.

32% of respon­dents (a plu­ral­i­ty) are undecided.

Mayor of Seattle poll finding, 2021
A visu­al of NPI’s poll find­ing for May­or of Seat­tle, 2021

The poll, which was con­duct­ed by Change Research for the North­west Pro­gres­sive Insti­tute, has a mod­eled mar­gin of error of 4.3% at the 95% con­fi­dence inter­val. All 617 respon­dents par­tic­i­pat­ed online. The poll was in the field from Mon­day, July 12th, 2021 through Thurs­day, July 15th, 2021.

Here are the exact ques­tions that we asked, and the respons­es that we received:

QUESTION: The can­di­dates for May­or of Seat­tle this year are list­ed below in the order that they will appear on the August Top Two bal­lot. Who are you vot­ing for?

[See list as it was shown to respon­dents]


  • Not sure: 54%
  • Bruce Har­rell: 15%
  • M. Lore­na González: 8%
  • Colleen Echohawk: 6%
  • Jessyn Far­rell: 4%
  • Andrew Grant Hous­ton: 3%
  • Arthur K. Lan­glie: 3%
  • Casey Sixkiller: 2%
  • Lance Ran­dall: 2%
  • Omari Tahir-Gar­rett: 0%
  • Bob­by Tuck­er: 0%
  • James Don­ald­son: 0%
  • Clin­ton Bliss: 0%
  • Hen­ry C. Den­ni­son: 0%
  • Stan Lipp­mann: 0%
  • Don L. Rivers: 0%

FOLLOW-UP QUESTION ASKED OF UNDECIDED VOTERS ONLY: If you had to choose, who would you vote for?


  • Not sure: 62%
  • Bruce Har­rell: 8%
  • M. Lore­na González: 6%
  • Colleen Echohawk: 6%
  • Andrew Grant Hous­ton: 4%
  • Casey Sixkiller: 3%
  • Jessyn Far­rell: 3%
  • James Don­ald­son: 2%
  • Lance Ran­dall: 2%
  • Arthur K. Lan­glie: 1%
  • Bob­by Tuck­er: 1%
  • Clin­ton Bliss: 0%
  • Hen­ry C. Den­ni­son: 0%
  • Stan Lipp­mann: 0%
  • Don L. Rivers: 0%
  • Omari Tahir-Gar­rett: 0%
  • Would not vote: 2%


  • Not sure: 32%
  • Bruce Har­rell: 20%
  • M. Lore­na González: 12%
  • Colleen Echohawk: 10%
  • Jessyn Far­rell: 6%
  • Andrew Grant Hous­ton: 6%
  • Casey Sixkiller: 4%
  • Arthur K. Lan­glie: 4%
  • Lance Ran­dall: 3%
  • James Don­ald­son: 1%
  • Bob­by Tuck­er: 1%
  • Omari Tahir-Gar­rett: 0%
  • Clin­ton Bliss: 0%
  • Hen­ry C. Den­ni­son: 0%
  • Stan Lipp­mann: 0%
  • Don L. Rivers: 0%
  • Would not vote: 1%

Bruce Har­rell — who the sur­vey crosstabs show is favored by old­er vot­ers — appears well posi­tioned to move on to the Novem­ber gen­er­al election.

Lore­na González’s hold on sec­ond place, mean­while, is more tenuous.

That’s because Colleen Echohawk came in just two points behind González. She was the only oth­er may­oral can­di­date besides Har­rell and González to reg­is­ter sup­port in the dou­ble dig­its in this survey.

Echohawk has clear­ly made a pos­i­tive impres­sion on Seat­tle vot­ers despite nev­er hav­ing run for office before. She can­not be count­ed out in this election.

González did just earn the sup­port of The Stranger, the city’s best known left lean­ing media out­let, and she has enthu­si­as­tic sup­port from the labor com­mu­ni­ty, so that could help her hold on to the sec­ond place spot. (A plu­ral­i­ty of respon­dents from union house­holds who have an opin­ion backed González.)

Still, Echohawk has an oppor­tu­ni­ty to con­tend for sec­ond place.

Jessyn Far­rell and Andrew Grant Hous­ton, mean­while, are tied for fourth place, with each receiv­ing 6%. While they can’t be count­ed out either, their chances of vault­ing into the top two seem much slim­mer than Echohawk’s.

The remain­ing can­di­dates all polled under 5% each or received no sup­port at all, as men­tioned above. They are all like­ly to be elim­i­nat­ed from con­sid­er­a­tion by vot­ers next month when the August Top Two elec­tion is certified.

King Coun­ty Elec­tions announced on Wednes­day that it had mailed over 1.4 mil­lion bal­lots to reg­is­tered vot­ers for the August Top Two election.

The depart­ment expects turnout of 40%, which would mean a return rate of two out of every five bal­lots. In 2019, the depart­ment notes we saw sum­mer turnout of 35% across King Coun­ty, while in 2017, it was 34%.

Turnout in Seat­tle will like­ly be high­er than the coun­ty as a whole.

Seat­tle vot­ers have a record of strong par­tic­i­pa­tion, and our sur­vey data shows that peo­ple are enthu­si­as­tic about vot­ing this sum­mer even if they don’t know who they’re vot­ing for yet. A whop­ping 88% of respon­dents said they “def­i­nite­ly” plan to vote, while only 8% said they will “prob­a­bly” vote. 4% said “maybe”.

(As stat­ed, the poll was of like­ly vot­ers, so any­one who said they weren’t vot­ing was thanked for their time and excused from the survey.)

Since near­ly a third of the like­ly vot­ers are unde­cid­ed with respect to their vote for may­or, the qual­i­ty, reach, and effec­tive­ness of the can­di­dates’ home stretch cam­paign­ing is going to mat­ter. Polls are snap­shots in time. This par­tic­u­lar dataset is a reflec­tion of the views of the Seat­tle elec­torate before bal­lots dropped.

There’s only three weeks left to go, yet those three weeks are when about one in three vot­ers indi­cat­ed to our poll­ster that they will be mak­ing a deci­sion about who they want to serve as Seat­tle’s chief exec­u­tive for the next four years.

Bal­lots in the August Top Two elec­tion are due back by Tues­day, August 3rd at 8 PM. A list of drop box loca­tions in Seat­tle and across Mar­tin Luther King Jr. Coun­ty is avail­able from King Coun­ty Elec­tions. Bal­lots can also be returned through the Unit­ed States Mail, but we rec­om­mend using a drop box.

NPI does not endorse can­di­dates for office and is not aligned with any of the can­di­dates run­ning for elect­ed posi­tions in Seat­tle this year. No cam­paigns were involved in the design or exe­cu­tion of this survey.

About the author

Andrew Villeneuve is the founder and executive director of the Northwest Progressive Institute, as well as the founder of NPI's sibling, the Northwest Progressive Foundation. He has worked to advance progressive causes for over two decades as a strategist, speaker, author, and organizer. Andrew is also a cybersecurity expert, a veteran facilitator, a delegate to the Washington State Democratic Central Committee, and a member of the Climate Reality Leadership Corps.

Adjacent posts

11 replies on “Bruce Harrell, Lorena González lead in 2021 Seattle mayoral race with many undecided”

  1. Thank you for the polling. I am not see­ing in the above and curi­ous to know how the online sam­ple was recruit­ed and what steps were tak­en to be sure they were a good rep­re­sen­ta­tive sample?

    1. Hi Dan! Great ques­tion, and thank you for asking. 

      Here’s a primer on the method­ol­o­gy and the steps tak­en to ensure the sam­ple was rep­re­sen­ta­tive, cour­tesy of our pollster:

      Sur­vey method­ol­o­gy notes

      • Change Research, a Pub­lic Ben­e­fit Cor­po­ra­tion based in Cal­i­for­nia, sur­veyed 617 like­ly August 2021 Top Two elec­tion vot­ers in Seat­tle from Mon­day, July 12th to Thurs­day, July 15th on behalf of the North­west Pro­gres­sive Insti­tute. All respon­dents par­tic­i­pat­ed online.
      • Change used tar­get­ed adver­tise­ments on Face­book, tar­get­ed adver­tise­ments on Insta­gram, and text mes­sages sent via the echo19 and/or Scale To Win plat­forms to cell phone num­bers list­ed on the vot­er file for indi­vid­u­als who qual­i­fied for the survey’s sam­ple uni­verse, based on their vot­er file data.
      • Regard­less of which of these sources a respon­dent came from, they were direct­ed to a sur­vey host­ed on SurveyMonkey’s web­site. Ads placed on social media tar­get­ed all adults liv­ing in Seat­tle. Those who indi­cat­ed that they were not reg­is­tered to vote were terminated.
      • As the sur­vey field­ed, Change used dynam­ic online sam­pling: adjust­ing ad bud­gets, low­er­ing bud­gets for ads tar­get­ing groups that were over­rep­re­sent­ed and rais­ing bud­gets for ads tar­get­ing groups that were under­rep­re­sent­ed, so that the final sam­ple was rough­ly rep­re­sen­ta­tive of the pop­u­la­tion across dif­fer­ent groups.
      • The sur­vey was con­duct­ed in Eng­lish, and has a mod­eled mar­gin of error of 4.3% at the 95% con­fi­dence interval.
  2. Do you still see Bruce Har­rell in the lead? Will you be doing anoth­er poll now that there are two candidates?

    1. Hi Leo­ra! Yes, we will be doing anoth­er poll of Seat­tle vot­ers for the gen­er­al elec­tion. That will field in October.

Comments are closed.