Teresa Mosqueda vs. Kenneth Wilson
Teresa Mosqueda vs. Kenneth Wilson​ (Campaign publicity photos)

Incum­bent Seat­tle City Coun­cilmem­ber Tere­sa Mosque­da is hav­ing a pret­ty good night. While fel­low incum­bent City Attor­ney Pete Holmes is in the fight of his polit­i­cal life against two chal­lengers who only emerged dur­ing Fil­ing Week a few weeks ago, Mosque­da is cruis­ing to reelec­tion against a large field of for­get­table chal­lengers who haven’t raised much mon­ey or done much campaigning.

In the first batch of returns, Mosque­da has 54.64% of the vote, a con­vinc­ing major­i­ty. Our polling indi­cat­ed that Mosque­da would eas­i­ly clinch the top spot, but also found a whop­ping 55% of vot­ers unde­cid­ed. Most of those not sure vot­ers appear to have backed Mosque­da. But a sig­nif­i­cant chunk also went to a can­di­date who per­formed very poor­ly in our sur­vey: Ken­neth Wilson.

Wil­son received 1% in the poll, but he has gar­nered 18.27% of the vote so far and is ahead of Kate Mar­tin, who came in sec­ond in our poll.

Mar­tin is pulling in twice as much sup­port as in our sur­vey (12.50% in these ini­tial returns, com­pared to 6% in the poll), but that’s sim­ply not good enough for sec­ond place due to Wilson’s mas­sive and remark­able late surge.

Wil­son is a licensed bridge struc­tur­al engi­neer who owns a small business.

On his web­site, he says that his cur­rent projects include a pedes­tri­an cross­ing over State Route 520 in NPI’s home­town of Redmond.

“As your coun­cil mem­ber, I will lean heav­i­ly on my ana­lyt­i­cal, engi­neer­ing, and infra­struc­ture back­ground to bring ratio­nal deci­sion mak­ing and progress con­trol fol­low up to Coun­cil actions,” he says in a mes­sage to voters.

Wil­son has been cam­paign­ing on reopen­ing the West Seat­tle Bridge to traf­fic.

“King County’s main­te­nance inspec­tion observed sig­nif­i­cant cracks in the Duvall Bridge’s twelve span 1,182-foot rein­forced con­crete box gird­ers. We designed the exter­nal steel strength­en­ing repair that win­ter and com­plet­ed con­struc­tion dur­ing a sum­mer clo­sure open­ing sev­en days ear­ly to its 17,000 vehi­cles a day,” Wil­son writes on his web­site, cit­ing a pre­vi­ous bridge repair project he worked on in East King Coun­ty, in the Sno­qulamie Val­ley, where Duvall is located.

“I have dif­fi­cul­ty under­stand­ing that with 100,000 vehi­cles per day why the West Seat­tle Bridge had not been sim­i­lar­ly pri­or­i­tized for some lev­el of open­ing,” Wil­son goes on to say. “Trucks and bus­es must cross on the low­er West Seat­tle Swing Bridge, but the upper West Seat­tle Bridge should have the heavy cen­tral con­crete bar­ri­er rail removed, the heavy out­er rails replaced with lighter ones, and the bridge opened imme­di­ate­ly to a lane of car traf­fic each way.”

It sure looks like Wil­son was able to some­how break through and con­nect with vot­ers in the days since our poll was in the field last month, despite hav­ing only raised $3,125.00. Accord­ing to the Seat­tle Ethics and Elec­tions Com­mis­sion, Wilson’s cam­paign has just sev­en con­trib­u­tors, and aside from pay­ing the fil­ing fee for office, he has only spent mon­ey on signs and a web­site.

That sug­gests vot­ers found his voter’s pam­phlet state­ment compelling.

Mar­tin has raised $23,900 from 493 con­trib­u­tors and spent $13,550.63.

Mosque­da has raised $180,603 and spent $122,459.82.

Bar­ring an inter­est­ing turn of events dur­ing the count­ing of the late bal­lots, Wil­son looks like Mosqueda’s gen­er­al elec­tion opponent.

Mar­tin def­i­nite­ly has third place locked up with 12.5% — no oth­er can­di­date is even above 2% — but since only the top two can­di­dates will move on to the gen­er­al elec­tion, Mar­tin is on the verge of elimination.

4,774 votes cur­rent­ly sep­a­rate Wil­son and Martin.

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.

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