1. People for a New Seattle Mayor, the second independent expenditure group that's supporting Ed Murray (IEs can raise unlimited amounts of money, but can't give directly to or coordinate with the candidate), has started raising cash after remaining relatively quiet since forming a month ago.
And with $45,000 from the Seattle firefighters union, $15,000 from the Seattle police union, $10,000 from the Seattle Chamber (the chamber also gave $52,000 to Murray's pre-primary PAC), $10,000 from the county and city employees union, and $5,000 from wealthy investor Nick Hanauer (known for backing gun control, charter schools, and writing class traitor op-eds in support of raising the minimum wage), the pro-Murray PAC reports raising $85,000 last week.
One of the two PACs that's been backing McGinn since before the primary, Working Families for Mayor McGinn, largely backed by the grocery union, raised $37,000 last week from the union, bringing the PAC's total to $120,000 raised ($100,000 of it from the grocery workers.)
Meanwhile, McGinn and Murray's own campaigns brought in $16,200 and $55,629 respectively last week.
2. There were back to back mayoral forums last night, one, in front of a largely older African American crowd on the edge of the CD in Leschi, sponsored by the United Black Christian Clergy of Washington State and the A. Philip Randolph Institute, and the other in front an elderly, mostly white crowd at the Horizon House on First Hill.
Both candidates got reprimanded and praised by the black audience. A McGinn supporter praised McGinn for initiatives such as the Career Bridge program, which works to connect ex-felons with jobs, and challenged Murray: "You have come late to our issues."
And moments later, another audience member praised Murray for working with him to pass a bill in Olympia that dedicated money to housing in African American communities, and scolded McGinn for ignoring lackadaisical policing. "I've had this conversation with you before. I've already talked to you three times and nothing has happened."
Their respective (pretty flat) rejoinders: Murray cited endorsements from African American colleagues such as state Rep. Eric Pettigrew (D-37, S. Seattle) and former King County Executive Ron Sims (and his work with former state Sen. Rosa Franklin from Tacoma), saying: "I haven't come late. That's why the people I've worked with over the years on these issues have endorsed me."
And McGinn invited the disgruntled man to meet with Harry Bailey, the former assistant police chief McGinn hired to work on police accountability issues, "who sits right next to my office,".
Sawant challenged Eyman to debate the minimum wage. 3. There was also a non-mayoral forum last night: The state senate transportation committee's listening tour finally stopped in Seattle (in First Hill at the First Presbyterian Church). The place was packed with transit supporters who urged the legislature to pass a transportation tax package that could fund Metro, which is facing a 17 percent cut in service.
However, the night's highlight wasn't about transportation. It came when Socialist City Council candidate Kshama Sawant testified shortly after anti-tax agitator Tim Eyman (whose illogical rap against the plan proclaims that the people, not legislators, should decide—while ignoring the fact that Seattle voters are simply asking for a local vote on an MVET to support bus service).
However, Sawant shifted gears and challenged Eyman to a debate on her plank to raise the minimum wage to $15.