Morning Fizz

"We Have to Make This a Constructive Conversation"

By Morning Fizz July 25, 2012

Caffeinated News & Gossip. Your daily Morning Fizz.

1. Still no response from the Port of Seattle re: the friendly overture from King County Executive Dow Constantine's chief of staff Sung Yang and Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn's policy director Ethan Raup.

Last week, Yang and Raup sent a letter to Port Chief of Staff Kurt Becket outlining $25 million in transportation projects that the County and City are working on with the Port that Yang and Raup want to refocus on given the Port's traffic concerns about the arena.

Port spokesman Peter McGraw told PubliCola yesterday that the Port has "been working with the the city [on these projects] before the arena came up" and they are "separate from the arena" and "there's nothing new ... East Marginal Way is a 10-year-old project. To see that packaged as new, when it's not new," McGraw said, was news to the Port.

Yang acknowledged that the project list existed before the arena standoff. "What I would acknowledge is that the arena has heightened attention, putting a focus on [transportation] issues that exist today. We have to be working on these issues together."

But he added that there are new components such as the "significant offer granting Port freight exclusive right of ways."

Was the letter a threat that the County and City would scale back their cooperation (and right of way offer) with the Port if the Port continues to oppose the arena proposal?

"I don't think there's a threat," Yang said. "It was written in a tone that we have to make this a constructive conversation."

The letter, Yang said, was written "to memorialize ideas we've been meeting about and to communicate and acknowledge that very significant infrastructure is in the process of being constructed."

2. In a KUOW report this morning on the 1st Congressional District race, Washington State Republican Party Chair Kirby Wilbur was quoted rooting for liberal Darcy Burner to make it through the primary:
Wilbur: "I am lighting candles, sacrificing sheep, whatever it takes. I'm begging, talking to God every day that it be Darcy Burner because she is the Dennis Kucinich of Washington state. If Darcy is the nominee, we will get 60 percent of the vote, easy."

3. Local arch-social conservative pastor Joe Fuiten has issued his primary election endorsements. Not many surprises, though rather than going all in for John Koster in the 1st Congressional District, where Republican Koster is almost certainly going through as the GOP candidate, Fuiten issued a dual endorsement for Koster and conservative Larry Ishmael.

He also went with a couple of Democrats, though these picks weren't surprising either. Fuiten endorsed incumbent Lt. Governor Brad Owen, who riles Democrats for his anti-pot advocacy and for backing the GOP's view that repealing corporate tax loopholes requires a two-thirds majority vote.

Another Democrat on Fuiten's list: Jack Connelly, a socially conservative (anti-gay rights) Tacoma lawyer who's running as a Democrat against Democratic state Rep. Jeannie Darnielle (D-27, Tacoma) for the open senate seat.

4. In case you missed it, late yesterday afternoon, we published a must-read editorial by Washington State Democratic Party Chair Dwight Pelz titled "Why Liberals Should Support the Sonics."

And speaking of the arena , don't miss our public forum on the $500 million arena proposal Monday at 7:00 at EVO on Capitol Hill, starring 710 ESPN sports host Mike Salk, Seattle City Council Mike O'Brien, Seattle Port Commissioner Tom Albro, and former Seattle City Council president Peter Steinbrueck. RSVP for the free event here.
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