Candidate forum mb218s

Seattle mayor Ed Murray speaks at the 46th District Democrats candidate forum last month. 

What happens next?

That's a question left unanswered after Seattle mayor Ed Murray announced he's dropping his reelection bid Tuesday morning, among a tearful group of staff members and supporters. He dropped out shortly after polling, amid outcry about the conversations surrounding sexual assault and the lack of sensitivity to survivors.

Before the lawsuit filed last month, Murray was expected to win and had the financial backing of more than $400,000, according to his campaign. His announcement evens out the playing field financially. Labor groups that endorsed Murray could put their support behind another candidate, in a crowded race with 12 challengers so far. Former U.S. attorney Jenny Durkan is also expected to announce soon (as early as today), and more could come before the May 19 deadline to declare. As of right now, it's a toss-up as to who makes it through the August 1 primary, which will eliminate all but two candidates. 

Social justice activist and attorney Nikkita Oliver raised the most, $34,000, among the remaining mayoral candidates. State senator Bob Hasegawa, a Bernie Sanders delegate at the DNC with an anti-corporate platform, won't be able to raise money while he's in the legislature. Former mayor Mike McGinn has the name recognition and support base, and civic activist Cary Moon would likely have urbanists behind her.

Other candidates: Libertarian Casey Carlisle, David Ishii, TV producer Michael Harris, Safe Seattle activist Harvey Lever, socialist Mary Juanita Martin, business owner Jason Roberts, council scolder Alex Tsimerman, and former rock drummer Keith Whiteman. 

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