Membership rejected the King County Labor Council board recommendation for a dual McGinn/Murray endorsement tonight. The board of the county's premier labor group had voted—with the necessary two-thirds majority—for the dual endorsement late this afternoon. However, to be approved, the motion required a two-thirds vote of the members.
On the first floor vote, the motion for the dual endorsement got the required two-thirds from membership, but it failed after a motion was made to affirm with a "per capita" vote; votes from members of bigger unions, such as the machinists, count slightly more. The machinists support McGinn, and their weighted numbers ultimately sank a dual endorsement.
Tonight's verdict: No decision. Membership will revisit the stalemate next month.
ORGINAL STORY: Mini-Jolt, Labor Board Recommends Dual McGinn Murray Endorse
The King County Labor Council board recommended a dual endorsement of incumbent Mayor Mike McGinn and challenger state Sen. Ed Murray (D-43, Capitol Hill) this afternoon. It takes a two-thirds vote of the board to make a recommendation to the members. The members will vote on the recommendation tonight. (It will take a two-thirds vote to pass on the full floor.)
In one sense, if the rec holds, it is a huge victory for McGinn who was on the outs with labor when he first came into office due to his adamant opposition to the tunnel project. (The KCLC endorsed Joe Mallahan in 2009.)
However, it can also be read as a big win for Murray, whom McGinn is tarring as the big business candidate. For Murray to have split the KCLC board, even though McGinn won the backing of activist unions such as the United Food and Commercial Workers—thanks, in part, to his dramatic stand against the Whole Foods mixed-use development in West Seattle (Whole Foods is non-union)—along with the hotel and restuarant workers' union, UNITE HERE, and the Teamsters, shows that Murray isn't going to cede the left to McGinn. (Murray has a 95 percent lifetime labor voting record after 18 years in Olympia.)
If the members don't go with the executive board's recommendation tonight, any other recommendation from the floor would have to wait another month to come to a vote. KCLC leader David Freiboth explains: "The only 'question' to be decided tonight is whether the Labor Council will decide to endorse both candidates or not. If that motion is defeated then a motion to endorse a single candidate will be in order but will not be debated and decided until our next meeting September 19."
Both candidates have gotten their share of labor endorsements, with Murray picking up the backing of five more unions yesterday.
To date: Here are how the union endorsements have come down.
American Federation of Teachers Local 1789 Executive Board, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 46, Joint Council of Teamsters No. 28, Laborers Local 1239, Teamsters Local 117, United Food and Commercial Workers 21, UNITE HERE Local 8.
Building and Construction Trades Council, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 46, International Union of Operating Engineers Local 609, Plumbers and Pipefitters UA Local 32, Sheet Metal Workers Local 66, and Teamsters Local 117 ... and yesterday's new ones: the International Union of Operating Engineers (IUOE), local 302, the Sailors' Union of the Pacific, the Washington State Council of County and City Employees Council 2, the Amalgamated Transit Union Local 587, and Laborers Local 242.