McGinn actually represents a different base then Licata. McGinn's base is the eco greens (i.e. the lefty, bike riding, CSA, density fans) who aren't big Licata fans. Licata's base is the Lesser Seattle crowd. Neither one of these bases is enough to win an election alone. (In this year's mayoral election, McGinn managed to add the Lesser Seattle crowd to his green bloc, thanks to his anti-tunnel position.)
Licata's second front? The social justice crowd. And that combo—the Lesser Seattle bloc and the social justice lefties— has allowed Licata to stay in office since first being elected in 1997.
Seattle City Council member Tim Burgess—the Seattle Times' supposed savior for mayor in 2013—just unwittingly delivered the social justice bloc to McGinn, who has otherwise never been a big social justice guy. McGinn, in other words, has now solidified a formidable political coalition of his own. Greens + Social justice lefties. (The lesser Seattle bloc wasn't going to stay in McGinn's corner given McGinn's whole war on cars platform.)
According to this email we just got from one of the Times' establishment cohorts, the old standby, tough-on-crime thing absolutely backfired.
Here's the email:
To all you smarty pants advising the Council:
Great job you idiots. We were supposed to wait until McGinn really screwed up, which he WILL do … hopefully Schell/WTO level, and then pounce. A year or two of waiting tops, and then POW, drop him like second period French.
But no, you imbeciles could not wait, you thought you were so brilliant that you had to pass that STUPID panhandling ordinance and let him VETO IT IN FRONT OF THE WORLD. He just locked up the liberal wing of Seattle like a new bike. That’s only 55 percent of the city. This is like Licata … but he’s the friggin' Mayor! How have we done at taking out Nick? Yeah, craptastic! How are you going to take him out in 2013?!?!?!? We.Are.Screwed.
Great job. While you jerks are all high fiving thinking you did some damage, he just solidified a base he didn’t have even five hours earlier. Someone should tell Burgess to stop measuring drapes for the 7th floor and start worrying about reelection. He is the new Sidran. Bang Up Job …. All of You.
A (Now) Former Big Shot Who Hates Mike