The King County Conservation Voters held their annual fundraiser at Seattle Center's Fisher Pavilion last night. The place was packed—particularly with local candidates in this season's parade of races, working the crowd.
Correction: The candidates running for King County Executive —King County Council Members Dow Constantine and Larry Phillips and State Sen. Fred Jarrett (D-41, Mercer Island)—were all there working the crowd.
The crew taking on the mayor—former Sonic James Donaldson, Sierra Club leader Mike McGinn, dating service entrepreneur Norman Sigler, and the latest candidate, T-Mobile executive Joe Mallahan— was nowhere in sight.
It seems particularly odd that McGinn—who's campaign has focused on the environment—was a no show. McGinn has been critical of Mayor Greg Nickels' environmental record—particularly Team Nickels' support for a tunnel highway along the waterfront. The crowd of Green power players seems like a readymade constituency for McGinn.
McGinn reports: "The kids needed their dad home one night this week, plus I was working with some volunteers who dropped by my place to prep for this weekend's campaign events."
Mayor Nickels was the one mayoral candidate on hand.
I asked McGinn where he was the other nights of the week—thinking he was out at campaign events. Nope. Just "working late" he told me. And out playing basketball at Franklin Hight School on Wednesday night.
As for this weekend's campaign events:
He's going to be at the Tilth plant sale at Meridian playground on Saturday afternoon, and he's doing a station area walk on Beacon Hill at ten. On Sunday, he's speaking at the Sustainable West Seattle festival at around 2:15.
I'm not getting these low key campaigns.
James Donaldson has certainly been quiet lately. I just talked to his campaign to ask them what they've been up to, particularly on fundraising. (Donaldson's finance reports only show $3,000.)
Given the fundraising goal of the newest candidate, Joe Mallahan ("to be on par with Nickels"), I asked if they had a new fundraising goal.
A.M. Nole, Donaldson's campaign manager, said they've done a couple of fundraisers, but added they're "not interested in that as much as getting James' message out."
I reiterated that I wasn't hearing much about Donaldson's message. Nole said Donaldson is busy "listening to everybody first, visiting with the neighborhood groups, before he comes out with some big statement. He doesn't just want to jump in and say I've got the best idea in the room."
Nole, who said Donaldson is being inducted into the African-American Ethnic Sports Hall of Fame this weekend at an event in Bellevue, is "in many ways, regrouping."