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Politics Northwest

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

Topic: 2013 Seattle mayoral race

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December 2, 2013 at 12:35 PM

Election 2013 map: McGinn support sagged everywhere but southeast Seattle

Update: 3:40 p.m. – Now with interactive, address-searchable map. Click map image for interactive version. We’ve also posted similar breakdowns for Kshama Sawant’s Seattle City Council win, and for Seattle’s ballot measures on District Elections and Public Campaign Financing Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn lost his bid for reelection with diminished voter support through most…

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November 5, 2013 at 7:30 AM

Election live-chat from The Seattle Times

Seattle Times reporters for months have analyzed the SeaTac minimum wage initiative, fact-checked campaigns in the race for Seattle mayor, and broken down the science behind genetically engineered food for state Initiative 522. And that’s just the beginning. In this post, you can relive our live Election Day coverage as we broke the news and discussed the…

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November 5, 2013 at 7:00 AM

As Election Day arrives, ballots coming in slowly

Washington’s 2013 election has drawn national media attention — and record-setting initiative spending. But voters? They’re not particularly tuned in, elections officials say.

With vote counting beginning today in the all-mail election, Secretary of State Kim Wyman’s office projects 51 percent turnout statewide.

That’s an average turnout for an off-year election, “and we don’t see anything that would have it depart from that,” said David Ammons, spokesman for Wyman’s office. This year’s ballot is “not utterly boring, or scintillating,” he said.

The big-ticket item for political spending is Initiative 522, which would require labeling of genetically engineered foods. Foes of that measure set a state record by raising more than $22 million to defeat it, while the Yes on 522 committee raised about $8 million. Virtually all that cash flowed from outside the state. Voters also are deciding the fate of Initiative 517, which would make it easier to place future initiatives on the ballot.

Higher turnout is expected in Seattle, where voters will decide whether to return Mayor Mike McGinn to a second term or replace him with state Sen. Ed Murray. That race has set fundraising records, too, with more than $2.6 million pulled in by the campaigns and independent expenditure groups.

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Comments | More in 2014 elections | Topics: 2013 elections, 2013 Seattle mayoral race, Initiative 522

October 29, 2013 at 11:17 AM

McGinn TV ad: “I believe in plowing snow”

Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn is up with a new TV ad making a pitch to voters on what he stands for — from “preschool for every kid” to “stopping coal trains” to “plowing snow.” In the 30-second spot, McGinn, standing in front of a city skyline, faces the camera and makes his case personally. That’s a…

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October 21, 2013 at 12:24 PM

New poll shows Murray with big lead over McGinn

With voters now filling out ballots, state Sen. Ed Murray has a big lead over Mayor Mike McGinn, according to a new poll. The poll of 400 likely voters, by Seattle based lobbying firm Strategies 360, shows Murray with 51 percent support to McGinn’s 34 percent. The poll was conducted Oct. 14-16 and has a…

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October 17, 2013 at 12:00 PM

Former rival Steinbrueck endorses Murray for mayor

Former Seattle City Councilmember Peter Steinbrueck endorsed state Sen. Ed Murray for mayor today.

During a news conference at Cloud City Coffee in Seattle’s Maple Leaf neighborhood, Steinbrueck said he was won over by Murray’s commitment to the city’s industrial sector, gender pay equity and his pledge to involve neighborhoods more in growth planning.

“I have only respect for Mayor [Mike] McGinn. He has led with passion and conviction, but he has left many of us disappointed,” Steinbrueck said.

Repeating a constant refrain of McGinn critics, Steinbrueck said Murray could bring together broader coalitions “rather than polarization and divisiveness.”

The atmosphere at the news conference was celebratory, with Murray leading in the polls and piling up big endorsements. One political operative asked whether a reporter had heard any news about who would serve on Murray’s transition team and administration. But Murray cautioned he was taking nothing for granted in the final weeks of the election.

Steinbrueck, who served on the City Council between 1997 and 2007, placed third in the August primary, taking 16 percent of the vote. City Councilmember Bruce Harrell, who finished fourth just behind Steinbrueck, endorsed Murray last month.

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October 8, 2013 at 5:58 PM

Murray insists he’s against coal trains, too

In another measure of the ideological tightness of Seattle’s “me too” mayoral race, state Sen. Ed Murray called a news conference Tuesday to point out he totally agrees with Mayor Mike McGinn on opposition to coal trains rolling through the city.

Seeking to rebut what he called a “whispering campaign” by McGinn forces, Murray said notwithstanding campaign cash he’s received from some pro-coal train businesses, he’s against the trains, which coal opponents say would disrupt traffic and send coal dust spraying into air and water — in addition to abetting global climate change.

It’s an issue that McGinn has elevated to a top-tier priority in his mayoral campaign. Murray has been more muted on the topic; hence Tuesday’s news conference in which he tried to put to rest doubts about where he stands.

“I have been, since the first day I announced in December, opposed to these coal trains, despite the information you might have gotten from — I guess you could call it the office of misinformation — the McGinn campaign,” Murray said at the news conference next to the train tracks on the downtown Seattle waterfront. As if to reinforce his point about the disruption more trains would cause, Murray’s event was interrupted twice by passing trains at the nearby railroad crossing.

Murray’s mayoral campaign has received donations and fundraising aid from some firms and individuals with ties to proposed new coal ports that would ship Rocky Mountain coal to Asia.

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Comments | More in 2014 elections | Topics: 2013 Seattle mayoral race, coal trains, Mayor Mike McGinn

September 27, 2013 at 11:59 AM

Murray and McGinn get testy over embezzlement case

A mayoral debate sponsored by the Seattle Parks Foundation Thursday night was mostly a genteel discussion of how to pay for and improve city parks. Mayor Mike McGinn floated the notion of a new tax on sugary drinks in Seattle. State Sen. Ed Murray backed the idea of a new taxing district.

But the debate really blew up at the end, when McGinn and Murray tangled over Murray’s legislative record and the alleged embezzlement of more than $250,000 by an employee from a Democratic campaign committee that Murray co-chaired.

McGinn attacked the embezzlement as an example of Murray’s failures, while Murray accused McGinn of taking the race to a “low point” by trying to score points off of personal tragedy.

The exchange showed just how testy the race is becoming as McGinn — after months of listening to criticisms of his mayoral record — tries to turn the tables by putting Murray’s record on trial, while Murray accuses the mayor of resorting to sleazy tactics.

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September 26, 2013 at 8:45 PM

Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn floats soda tax to fund parks

Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn is floating the idea of a 1-cent-an-ounce tax on sugary beverages, including canned soda and fountain drinks, as a way to raise money for Seattle parks. McGinn announced his proposal at a mayoral forum Thursday night sponsored by the Seattle Parks Foundation. While details were sketchy, McGinn said his plan would raise the…

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September 26, 2013 at 1:30 PM

McGinn blasts Murray’s finger pointing in embezzlement scandal

Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn pounced today on state Sen. Ed Murray’s attempts to avoid blame for the alleged embezzlement of $250,000 by the director of a Democratic campaign committee Murray co-chaired.

Speaking at a news conference at his campaign headquarters, McGinn called Murray’s response to the thefts of funds from the Senate Democratic Campaign Committee “very, very troubling and a real insight into his character as an executive and a leader.”

The SDCC’s former executive director Michael King was charged this week with eight counts of theft for allegedly writing himself checks from the SDCC coffers and covering his tracks by inventing poll results he said the money had paid for.

While Murray yesterday took some responsibility for failing to notice the thefts, he and his fellow co-chairs also pointed blame at the SDCC’s former treasurer, Jason Bennett, who’d alerted them to the thefts in February.

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