I wrote a post back in late March comparing the pileup in the mayor's race to the 2009 King County Executive scrum, which featured a pack of candidates who were carving up the Democratic base for a chance to make it through the primary election.
I went as far as to identify each candidate's counterpart in the earlier race. So, for example, we had Tim Burgess as Fred Jarrett. (Burgess wouldn't make a bad deputy mayor, now would he?)
It occurred to me, though, that there was a more recent race starring a pack of qualified candidates where there are also analogies to be made to this year's mayoral election: Last year's battle in the 1st U.S. Congressional District, featuring: now-U.S. Rep. Suzan DelBene (then, techie entrepreneur and former head of the state department of revenue); unapologetic lefty and netroots pied piper Darcy Burner; state Sen. Steve Hobbs; former state legislator Laura Ruderman; and longshot candidate and small businessman, Darshan Rauniyar.
I got in trouble with one the campaigns when I did the King County Executive comparison because I matched state Sen. Ed Murray with Dow Constantine, who won that race; never mind that we actually endorsed state Rep. Ross Hunter in the '09 King County Executive's race, and it would have made more sense to accuse us of playing favorites for likening one of the mayoral candidates to Hunter ... which we did: Mayor Mike McGinn. (They're both unedited know-it-alls.)
So, I'm not going to assign everyone a counterpart this time (don't need the angry phone calls), but, if you're obsessed with the mayor's race like I am, it's a fun exercise.
I will get it started, though: Bruce Harrell is Steve Hobbs.
I'm aware that both Harrell and Hobbs are mixed-race, but that's not the point of the comparison. It's this: Both are charming and funny (even wise guys) on the stump; both, considered moderates in the state legislature and on the council respectively, are more frat boy than typical Seattle lefty. Harrell is a former football star who wears cufflinks and Hobbs is an army vet (he still serves in the Washington Army National Guard) who has Star Wars memorabilia in his office and likes Huey Lewis.
Both can certainly be liberals, though. Hobbs, for example, sponsored this year's Reproductive Parity Act and Harrell is pushing legislation he says would help African Americans who are disproportionately affected by past criminal records by A) preventing employers from using prior convictions to disqualify a candidate from a job if the crime has no relationship to the job and B) requiring potential employers to do criminal background checks in the later part of the hiring process after they've made a conditional offer.
And who's Darcy Burner? Like I said. I'll skip the angry phone calls this time.