Earlier this week, the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce, through its political committee CASE (the Civic Alliance for a Sound Economy), issued several city council endorsements.
Meanwhile, the local chapter of the Sierra Club has been rolling out endorsements a couple of names at a time, collectively releasing a formal roundup of several today.
There's more to come from both groups, but so far, out of the six races that both groups have endorsed in, they've agreed on three candidates. That healthy overlap blows up the already simplistic narrative that this year's council race is about so-called establishment candidates versus the next Kshama Sawant.
While the chamber lines up on Seattle's right and the Sierra Club lines up on Seattle's left, both groups endorsed position four candidate Rob Johnson, position seven candidate Sally Bagshaw, and position nine candidate Lorena González.
The supposedly pro-developer council already voted seven to two for the linkage fee, including Burgess, who supported a higher fee on developers than former mayor (and Sierra Club hero)
Wait. Johnson, "an advocate for transit and bicycle/pedestrian infrastructure...[with] an in-depth understanding of how better transportation infrastructure and housing can provide the basis for a livable, affordable, lower-carbon city that does not push lower income individuals into the suburbs," according to the gushing Sierra Club, got the chamber endorsement in the position four race instead of the mayor's pick, supposed business lackey Jean Godden? Meanwhile, Johnson, supposedly now a tool of the establishment chamber also got the Sierra Club nod? But didn't the Sierra Club just just endorse Sawant and O'Brien? But wait, isn't O'Brien stalling density (the urban Sierra Club's cause celebre) and isn't O'Brien reining in pod apartments?
And isn't the chamber against the linkage fee? But their pick González is for it. (So is Tim Burgess, by the way, who the chamber also endorsed.) In fact, the supposedly pro-developer city council already voted seven to two for the linkage fee, including Burgess, who supported a higher fee on developers than former mayor (and Sierra Club hero) Mike McGinn.
But...but of course the chamber endorsed González—her populist opponent, Bill Bradburd, is for rent control. Isn't he? Nope. He's not. "It's a red herring," he told the 36th District Democrats.
Ok. But, you know, the chamber endorsed all of establishment consultant Christian Sinderman's candidates, right? Nope. Bruce Harrell's consultant expenditures are going to Cindi Laws, RuleSeven, and Blue Wave. And the chamber passed on Sinderman's candidate in the fifth district in North Seattle, Sandy Brown. They told me, "Through our extensive candidate evaluation process, we did not find a candidate in district five...who currently met our endorsement criteria."
Oh, you mean like the supposedly establishment candidate they endorsed in the third position, Pamela Banks, who supports the linkage fee? (Here's a link; go to the 53:22 mark when I ask Banks what her position on the linkage fee is.)
Here's the list of endorsements.
The lefty Sierra Club: Position two Tammy Morales, position three Kshama Sawant, position four Rob Johnson, position five Halei Watkins, position six Mike O'Brien, position seven Sally Bagshaw, position eight John Roderick, position nine Lorena González
The conservative CASE: Position one Shannon Braddock, position two Bruce Harrell, position three Pamela Banks, position four Rob Johnson, position five no endorsement for the primary, position six no endorsement for the primary, position seven Sally Bagshaw, position eight Tim Burgess, position nine Lorena González.