Topic: Tim Burgess
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May 17, 2013 at 1:31 PM
Seattle City Councilmember Tim Burgess has dropped out of the Seattle mayor’s race.
In a statement released this afternoon — hours before the filing deadline — Burgess said the city needs new and visionary leadership, and expressed concern that having too many candidates in the race might hinder that goal.
“Instead, I will continue to serve this city that I love from my position on the City Council, the most rewarding job of my life,” he said in a statement.
Burgess said in an interview he had been reconsidering his candidacy for about 10 days but only made the decision last night. He said he’d heard from business leaders that he would make an outstanding mayor, but would have trouble getting elected in a field of seven other candidates.
“I realized this was going to be a difficult path. “I did not want to dilute our opportunity to have a new mayor.”
As of last week, Burgess had raised $232,000 for his campaign, more than any other candidate.
In an interview with The Times this week, Burgess talked about his strategy for getting through a crowded primary.
“We’re talking to voters across the city. We have strong support from workers and neighborhood business districts, from people concerned about issues in the police department. I have a lot of support from women who care about children and public education and who care very much about how we protect women from domestic violence and sexual assault,” he said.
“I think we continue to meet people around the city and communicate our message. I think voters are looking for someone they can trust, someone who is competent, someone who has a proven record of bringing people together to get things done.”
State Sen. and mayoral candidate Ed Murray said he was surprised by the move. “It obviously shakes up the race,” he said. “I viewed Tim as a strong, knowledgeable opponent.”
He said he’s not yet sure what Burgess’ departure will mean, but “this does narrow the field and puts more focus on those who remain.”
March 12, 2013 at 2:38 PM
Corrected version: A previous version of this story misstated the amount supported by Burgess and McGinn to study light rail to Ballard.
Like many a mayoral candidate (and mayor) before him, Seattle Councilmember Tim Burgess today said he’d do a better job at fixing potholes and addressing the road-maintenance backlog in the city if he’s elected mayor.
Standing near an intersection on Capitol Hill, Burgess pointed to a patched stretch of pavement on East Pike Street and then to an unpatched crater on Boylston Avenue, about 10 yards away, and questioned why city repair crews hadn’t gotten to both.
Burgess said he’d change the strategy for fixing streets from what he called a “worst first” approach to one that would divide the city into grids and direct the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) to repair streets in a more systematic and proactive way.
“Our city transportation system is falling apart. That’s unacceptable,” Burgess said.
March 7, 2013 at 3:43 PM
A new Survey USA poll conducted for KING 5 finds weak numbers for Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn as he heads into his re-election campaign.
The poll of 647 registered voters, which tested McGinn against several announced and rumored rivals, found just 15 percent of voters said they’d support the incumbent. That was tied with former King County Executive Ron Sims, who has so far announced no plans to run. Seattle City Councilmember Tim Burgess, who has announced his campaign, placed third with 10 percent support.
The rest of the field, including state Sen. Ed Murray, Councilmember Bruce Harrell and former Councilmember Peter Steinbrueck, managed only single-digit support. And 34 percent of voters said they are simply undecided.
January 9, 2013 at 6:29 PM
Seattle City Council member Tim Burgess says he has more than $80,000 in hand after two months of raising money for his mayoral run. Burgess sent out his latest fundraising numbers this afternoon as Mayor Mike McGinn prepares to announce he’s running for re-election.
Burgess will report he raised $75,000 in December, bringing his total to more than $100,000. Burgess announced at the end of November he would run for mayor. He’s not the only candidate with financial momentum. State Senator Ed Murray, who can’t raise money while the Legislature is in session but raised $100,000 in less than two weeks before the session started. Former City Council member Peter Steinbrueck hasn’t reported his first fundraising totals. Neighborhood activist Kate Martin and Realtor Charlie Staadecker are in the race, as well.
McGinn hasn’t filed his fundraising reports for December.
December 12, 2012 at 1:48 PM
When the Seattle City Council adopted new campaign finance rules in October, it was widely assumed that potential mayoral hopefuls Tim Burgess and Bruce Harrell would transfer surplus money from their 2011 City Council campaigns into the mayor’s race. The new rules prohibited rolling over surplus campaign funds once the law took effect mid-November. Burgess had almost $78,000 and Harrell $64,000.
But citing the spirit of the law, Burgess in November returned almost $44,000 to donors of his 2011 campaign and donated $25,000 to the Washington State Democrats. Harrell transferred his campaign surplus to an account for a council race in 2015. He hasn’t decided yet whether to jump into the 2013 mayor’s race against incumbent Mike McGinn.
Despite starting from scratch, Burgess raised almost $26,000 during the last week of November after announcing he would challenge McGinn. His supporters include two Seattle School Board members, Michael DeBell and Harium Martin-Morris, and developers Martin Smith and Gregory Johnson, an executive with Wright Runstad & Co.
McGinn has raised about $95,000 but spent $57,000. In November, he raised just $7,200, a relatively weak showing for an incumbent. His donors include CleanScapes CEO Chris Martin, Cedar Grove Recycling executive John Banchero III, and more than a dozen of McGinn’s own staff.
Virtual unknown Charlie Staadecker, a commercial real estate broker, raised $18,000 in November to bring his total to $58,000.
State Sen. Ed Murray, D-Seattle, who jumped into the race last week, raised just $1,700 and reported almost $12,000 in campaign debt. Because of state campaign laws, Murray can’t raise money or solicit endorsements while the Legislature is in session.
November 28, 2012 at 3:26 PM
Newly announced Seattle mayoral candidate Tim Burgess tried to get off on the right foot yesterday with The Stranger, offering them an exclusive story about his decision to get into the race.
In a flattering piece about Burgess, a city councilmember with whom The Stranger has often disagreed, Dominic Holden wrote: “Giving an advance interview to The Stranger is classic Burgess; it’s his cunning genius to neutralize critics by talking to them.”
It was a clever piece of strategy by Burgess, known for media savvy honed as a former journalist and advertising executive and in two terms on the City Council. The Stranger tends to go overboard for its favorite candidates. In 2009, the paper published a cover with McGinn’s face on it at a crucial point in the race, and wrote long articles in his favor, including one that called his opponent an “idiot” in the headline. In other words, it’s not a bad thing to have The Stranger on your side, and Burgess may have seen an opportunity, since The Stranger has been less than supportive of the mayor recently.
The only problem was that The Stranger’s scoop was not really a scoop. The Seattle Times, PubliCola, and The Seattle P-I had stories and interviews prepped for publication at 5 p.m. Tuesday, the same time Burgess told Holden he could put up his story. Holden noticed, and today posted a long Facebook status taking the councilmember to task. He wrote:
“Tim Burgess promised to give The Stranger a scoop on his run for mayor, even approaching me with the idea, but he was not true to his word. In our hour-long interview last week, he agreed that we could publish the story last night at 5:00 p.m., before any other news outlet. Burgess unequivocally guaranteed that he would not confirm his candidacy to any other news outlet until after The Stranger published its story.”
In the comments, Burgess apologized: “Dom is right. Dom was the first journalist I entrusted with my plans to announce. I sat down with him a week ago for my most extensive interview. As word of my announcement spread yesterday afternoon I granted other interviews.”
Still, it looks like his early effort to co-opt The Stranger’s support fell flat.
November 13, 2012 at 11:44 AM
Local realtor Charlie Staadecker reports he has raised $40,000 in the first month of his 2013 campaign for Seattle mayor.
Staadecker, 69, of Mount Baker, runs a commercial real estate firm. His campaign kicked off a month ago with a theme song and four pillars: education, jobs and economic security, quality of life, and safety and core services. About 40 percent of Staadecker’s contributors are retired, and about half of them gave the maximum amount: $700.
It’s an early indication of support for a little-known candidate in what is likely to become a race crowded with familiar names. Mayor Mike McGinn’s perceived unpopularity has made way for a long list of local elected officials considering a run for mayor in 2013. Seattle City Council members Tim Burgess and Bruce Harrell are both thinking about it, along with state Sen. Ed Murray, who is just off a big win as a leader if the Referendum 74 campaign for gay marriage.
Former City Council member Peter Steinbrueck has said he may run, and this week, after years outside the public eye, he is launching into public civic engagement about proposed plans for South Lake Union. On his Facebook page, Steinbrueck has questioned proposed zoning for the neighborhood and is urging people to turn out for a Wednesday public hearing. Former King County Executive Ron Sims also has expressed an interest in the race.
McGinn reported raising almost $80,000 at the end of October, but he has spent more than half of that. At the same point in former Mayor Greg Nickels’ last campaign in 2008, he had similar low approval ratings in polls, but he had raised almost $270,000. He lost in the primary.
McGinn ran a famously cheap underdog campaign in 2009, winning with only $290,000 total.
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