In a campaign speech today, Mayor Mike McGinn appealed to neighborhood groups for their re-election support. He’s likely trying to recruit supporters of former City Councilmember Peter Steinbrueck, who came in third in the August primary.
While the economy is booming, McGinn said at a news conference backed by about 40 neighborhood leaders, “You’re worried about the pace of change.”
The mayor is usually an urbanite, pushing for density and investment in transit. His campaign theme for the primary was “forward.” But he said he would focus on investments in neighborhoods besides downtown, and expand neighborhood planning, so residents could weigh in formally on rising rents and building heights.
“If you live far from downtown, you’ve been waiting for sidewalks for a long time. I know about that,” he said, making a reference to his time as a neighborhood leader in Greenwood.
Last week, City Councilmember Bruce Harrell — who came in fourth in the primary — endorsed Murray.
McGinn used his news conference, in Ballard, to blast Murray’s record in the state Legislature, and he continued to do it during a forum hosted by the Ballard Chamber of Commerce. He said Murray is promising to use his relationships in Olympia to lobby for a transportation package the senator couldn’t get passed when he was Democratic leader there.
“We need leadership from Senator Murray where he is,” he said.
Meanwhile Murray (who countered that he is still working on the transportation package) continued to rack up big endorsements, starting the day with the Seattle Fire Fighters Union endorsement.
At the forum, Murray and McGinn seemed like they didn’t like each other. In his 10-minute introduction, Murray accused the mayor of being divisive.
“I don’t believe that the city has moved forward in the last four years … because we’ve been involved in divisive politics,” Murray said. Specifically, he said the mayor fought with the Department of Justice over police reform, with the city attorney, and with the City Council.
“I don’t want to be a mayor who spends my time attacking other liberals and moderates,” he said.