Earlier this week, we interviewed state Sen. Ed Murray (D-43, Capitol Hill) about his new gig as senate majority leader (his caucus awarded him the spot on Tuesday).
The interview was done over email, which allowed Murray to sidestep our last question; we wondered whether Murray, a political hero thanks to the gay marriage vote, had finally decided to run for mayor.
His name has been on the list for months.
Here's that email exchange:
PubliCola:Are you running for mayor?
However, we interviewed him on the phone the next day so he couldn't ignore the question. Here's what he said:
I see real opportunities ... for this city to partner with its school district, for us to start looking at bigger issues and thinking bigger and not getting caught so much in minutia which sometimes we do in this city.
First of all there’s the personal level. And Michael [his partner] and I haven’t completed our discussions around how it would work in our lives.
Second, I’m just a person who has to do what I love, and I need to be sure I would absolutely enjoy being mayor. I see real opportunities there; for this city to partner with its school district, for us to start looking at bigger issues and thinking bigger and not getting caught so much in minutia—which sometimes we do in this city.
I just think this is a great city with great opportunities to really do great things.
I think my legislative career shows I specialize in bringing people together to get wins, and I think the city needs that. That excites me.
There are mechanics of this that have to be figured out. I decided I wouldn’t do anything while R-74 [the gay marriage measure] was on the ballot. Which means I'm not in a strong financial situation. I haven’t been spending the last six months meeting with people throughout the city lining up contributions, trying to pull a campaign together.
These are unanswered questions that have got to be answered pretty shortly.
I’ve been working on R-74, working for senate Democrats. Then you go into a freeze [state legislators are not allowed to raise money while the session is on; it runs through April].
So, there are questions about if I were to say yes, would I do that before session, would that politicize the session? If you wait too long, have you lost a lot of support that would have come your way? These are unanswered questions that have got to be answered pretty shortly.