1. Defying expectations, last week's election turnout was the highest in an off-year primary election in a decade—more than 37 percent (so far; election results won't be certified until September 2). The likeliest explanation: The all-mail ballot, which made it easier for voters who used to go to the polls to vote from home. (The fact that the ballot was so short—just two pages—couldn't have hurt either).
Prior to this year, the highest turnout was in 2003, when five city council seats (but not the mayor's office) were up for grabs.
2. Last night, State Sen. Ed Murray (D-43) confirmed the theory we floated yesterday afternoon : Labor leaders are interested in having him run as a write-in candidate for mayor.
Murray said he's open to the idea and he's meeting with supporters this morning to hear them out. He also said the contingent includes more than just labor leaders.
He also confirmed something else we'd heard: There are other names on the list. He did not know who.
3. US Congressman Adam Smith (D-9) will hold a health care town hall meeting tonight at the Harry Lang Stadium in Lakewood (6615 111th Ave. S.) tonight from 7:00 to 8:30 pm; PubliCola will be on the scene.
4. There's a lively comments thread on our response yesterday to the Seattle Times' front-page story about the Route 7 bus, including a response from the writer, Philip Lucas. (The responses break down, more or less, into two themes: Those who agreed that the story was condescending and romanticized riding on a route where crime, sexual harassment, and other unpleasant scenes are common, and those who thought our opinions were invalid because we weren't born here.)
Lucas' response, which notes that he rode the 7 for years before heading off to college, was more thoughtful than most, but we still stand by our take: His piece lacked insight into the daily lives of people who ride unpleasant bus routes not because they find them a "colorful" part of city life, but because they have to. Read it for yourself here .
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