The campaign finance reports (detailing the past two weeks) in the runup to next Tuesday (election day) are in.
Some noteworthy details:
•As they've been all along, the two candidates running for District One (West Seattle) were neck and neck: Shannon Braddock raised about $16,000 in the last two weeks, and Lisa Herbold raised about $14,000. Braddock, the "establishment" choice to Herbold's populist lefty candidacy, has raised about $35,000 more overall—$148,000 to $113,000. Herbold still has about $11,000 cash on hand, though, while Braddock is in the red by $14,000. The business-backed independent expenditure group that's supporting Braddock—and ran TV ads starring King County executive Dow Constantine—raised $130,000 overall, but didn't do any fundraising in the past two weeks.
•In District Three—Capitol Hill, the Central Area, Madison Valley—Urban League leader Pamela Banks is still making a strong go of it despite the seeming inevitability that incumbent Kshama Sawant will win. Banks raised $50,000 in the last two weeks, the most of any candidate. (Sawant raised $32,000, the second highest of any candidate this filing period, bringing her massive total to $415,000 versus Banks's $368,000. Banks's grand total is the third highest take of any candidate—Sawant's is No. 1. Tim Burgess has raised the second most overall. But remember: He's running citywide.)
•In District Four—Wallingford, the U District, Wedgwood—transportation geek Rob Johnson had a surprisingly strong showing during the past two weeks, raising nearly $23,000, his strongest report to date. In this last push for candidates to seize the momentum, Johnson's opponent Michael Maddux, comparatively, raised $9,000 . Johnson remains far ahead in total fundraising—$152,000 to about $60,000.
•At-large Position Eight candidate, incumbent council president Tim Burgess, had a strong close, raising $22,000 and bringing his total to $382,000. His opponent Jon Grant raised $11,000 bringing his total to $72,000.
•North Seattle property owner Faye Garneau (who I reported earlier this month had already contributed $150,000 to defeat the transportation levy), contributed another $175,000 late yesterday.
Garneau, also a big Tim Eyman contributor, is the main funder of the effort to defeat the transportation levy, contributing $325,000 of the group's $335,000 total.
•And in what remains the most glaring irony of the campaign season, the lefty campaign finance reform measure, I-122 (a proposal to give every voter a $100 voucher to spend on their candidate of choice while lowering fundraising limits overall), continues to take in money—Citizens United–style—from generic sounding political groups whose individual donors are not listed at the public disclosure commission. I've pointed this out before, but in the past two weeks alone, I-122 (Honest Elections) took in nearly $500,000 bringing its grand total to $1.3 million.
Recent big donations come from Every Voice (a Washington, DC–based liberal group) and Washington Community Action Network (a local social justice group) at $158,000 and $250,000 respectively.
Another big donor, Represent WA PAC, is listed at the Public Disclosure Commission, but its top donor is listed simply as the Massachusetts-based Represent.Us at $25,000. (That group politely sent me a PDF of their top donors list, which included mostly liberal foundations.)
I don't think irony is the right word, but another notable thing about I-122: Clearly, independent expenditures have emerged as a new force for out-of-whack spending in local elections. For example, Neighbors for Shannon and United for Tim combined raised a half million dollars. I-122 does not prevent IE funding.