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The Seattle Times political team explores national, state and local politics.

October 10, 2013 at 4:43 PM

In first TV debate, Seattle mayoral candidates tried to rewrite some history

We fact-checked the first televised mayoral debate Wednesday night on KING5, and posted what we found in this live-chat.  You can catch up here if you missed it.

We found that Mayor Mike McGinn and state Sen. Ed Murray fudged a few facts.

Murray tried to deflect the blame for an embezzlement scandal that happened while he was in charge of the state Democratic Campaign Committee. He said the thefts happened before he was in leadership. But reporter Jim Brunner posted the charging papers from that case, which show that the thefts continued and even grew on Murray’s watch.

McGinn repeated a familiar narrative: that he held up the settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice about the Seattle Police Department because he wanted to ensure the city got to appoint a citizens group. In the debate, McGinn made it sound like the Justice Department resisted the citizens group. But in an interview on KUOW two weeks ago, U.S. Attorney Jenny Durkan says her office proposed the Citizens Police Commission McGinn has often taken credit for.

In response, McGinn points to a speech by the U.S. assistant attorney general last summer, where he gives credit for the idea to McGinn.

Check out a video of that speech, along with fact-checks on police department staffing and other points each candidate made.

0 Comments | More in 2014 elections | Topics: KING5

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