Gloves come off in District 3 cash battle as Bowers first to have Democracy Voucher cap lifted

Bowers at a recent “Coffee with Logan” session (Image: Logan for Seattle)

The battle over District 3’s seat on the Seattle City Council is the city’s most expensive. Some of that money — $75,000 of it, to be exact — is why candidate Logan Bowers has achieved a milestone first for the district. Bowers is now the first D3 Democracy Voucher recipient to be released from the program’s fundraising cap.

“With the latest round of Democracy Vouchers currently being processed, I’ll hit the $75k limit,” Bowers explained to CHS. “By raising $76k herself through last month alone, Kshama has pushed the price tag on a fair election even higher.” Continue reading

Can DeWolf win District 3 running against ‘homelessness, rising housing costs, anti-worker values, regressive taxes’ — and not Sawant?


When Zachary DeWolf took the mic at Tougo Coffee on Yesler Way to announce his candidacy for Seattle City Council District 3 Tuesday morning, he made sure to make one thing clear. “I’m not running against whoever is in office,” he said, flanked by his husband, friends, and community leaders including Tunny Vann from the Port of Seattle and Sokha Danh of the Seattle Chinatown International District Preservation Development Authority.

With his candidacy, DeWolf, a citizen of the Chippewa Cree Nation, the first out gay Seattle Public Schools board member, former Capitol Hill Community Council president and program manager for regional homelessness agency All Home King County, joins an already-crowded race to dethrone incumbent Sawant, who is running for a third term.

During his speech, DeWolf posited that his opponent was not Sawant, but rather “homelessness, rising housing costs, anti-worker values, regressive taxes and fees.”

Still, he also said “we need to ask ourselves if any of us are better off than we were eight years ago or if any of our community’s problems have been solved during that time. I also believe we need a leader who is uncompromising and absolute in their commitment to listen to their constituents rather than allow their own personal politics to set their agenda. While it might be easier to deliver soundbites or yell our problems away, we simply don’t have time for that anymore,” which reads as a critique of Sawant, who has been charged by opponents and critics of choosing rallies over results, her Socialist Alternative organization over D3 constituents.

Continue reading

USPS to hold meeting on East Union post office ‘relocation’

Long gone — but maybe coming back? (Image: CHS)

After telling customers their best bet was to head to Capitol Hill for mail services, the United States Postal Service is now talking relocation when it comes to a post office near 23rd and Union.

USPS officials have scheduled a May 2nd public meeting to talk about a new Central District location. USPS real estate specialist Greg Shelton will be in attendance to discuss options.

The session appears to represent big change from the beginning of the year as the post office made way for coming redevelopment at Midtown Center. “We will return once the re-development has concluded,” a spokesperson told CHS at the time. “In the meantime, we are suggesting that our customers go to the Broadway Post Office for their mailing needs.”

It isn’t clear if that timeline has changed but District 3 representative Kshama Sawant, with the 2019 race for her City Council seat heating up, is calling on supporters to join her at the May 2nd meeting. Continue reading

DeWolf, first openly gay person on Seattle school board and former Capitol Hill Community Council president, joins race for Sawant’s District 3 seat

(Image: Elect Zachary DeWolf)

Zachary DeWolfSeattle Public Schools board member representing Central Seattle neighborhoods and former Capitol Hill Community Council president, has announced he will also join the race for Kshama Sawant’s seat on the Seattle City Council.

“I’ve been advocating for my neighborhoods for the past seven years and I think it is time we have a Council member who will also advocate for our neighborhoods and the critical needs of our neighbors,” DeWolf said in his announcement. “I want to continue to meet with people in every area of our district and hear what matters most to them. Those are the voices and memories that I will take to City Hall.”

DeWolf says he is the first openly gay person to be elected to Seattle’s school board. Continue reading

What will it take for Orion to outrace Sawant in D3? Business, bravery, and ‘a queer voice on council again’

Orion was introduced Tuesday by Aleksa Manila, “drug counselor by day, drag diva by night,” before his campaign announcement on Broadway

Walking through the Emerald City chaos of Broadway and its glorious mix of the glamour and the squalor of Seattle on a Tuesday morning is one thing. Holding a press conference to announce your candidacy for City Council at the corner of Broadway and Harrison in the middle of it all is quite another.

There is one thing for certain in the just-starting race for the District 3 seat at Seattle City Hall. The campaign will include two of the bravest politicians in the city. Continue reading

Capitol Hill Chamber of Commerce head Egan Orion challenging Sawant for City Council seat — UPDATE

(Image courtesy Egan Orion)

The field challenging Kshama Sawant for the District 3 Seattle City Council continues to grow as newly-hired Capitol Hill Chamber of Commerce head Egan Orion joined the race this week.

Orion, who is also the administrator of the Broadway Business Improvement Area, has long been a fixture in Capitol Hill before taking on a role at the chamber. He began working with Seattle PrideFest, where he is now the executive director, in 2007 and has been organizing what he says is the largest volunteer-driven event in the district with PrideFest Capitol Hill since 2017.

When a sudden accident led the city to revoke a Capitol Hill festival’s license in 2017, Orion and his team quickly stepped in with less than two weeks to set up five blocks worth of programming, a seemingly insurmountable goal. Continue reading

Sawant ethics complaints over Socialist Alternative influence dismissed

The Seattle Ethics and Elections Commission has announced it has dismissed two complaints lodged against District 3 representative Kshama Sawant over allegations the City Council member misused her position on behalf of her Socialist Alternative political organization.

“Fundamentally, I believe that elected officials are free to structure their decision-making process as they wish, subject to the will of the voters every four years,” SEEC director Wayne Barnett writes in his decision. “Campaigns are won and lost based on voters’ estimations of whose interests elected officials are serving and who interests they are not. I do not find the way Councilmember Sawant makes her decisions to be a misuse of the position.”

The dismissal covers two complaints filed against Sawant including one from District 3 opponent Logan Bowers. Continue reading

Nguyen makes run for District 3 with focus beyond Capitol Hill

(Image: Elect Ami)

The boundaries of District 3, of course, extend well beyond Capitol Hill. And the candidates to represent the district also extend beyond the names you might think of first.

Ami Nguyen, a public defender who calls Yesler Terrace home, sees her role as running for the Seattle City Council to represent people across the entire district — the Central District and Capitol Hill, yes, but Yesler Terrace, Mt Baker, Madrona, Leschi, Madison Park, and Montlake, too.

“When I set out to do this campaign, I told myself that’s the definitely the neighborhood I want to reach out to.” Continue reading

CHS Pics | Faces from the District 3 campaign kickoffs

It is early, so very early in the race for District 3. The primary won’t be held until August and we won’t even know the final roster fo candidates for months. But the race is taking shape. It is most definitely not a two candidate show — meet Ami Nguyen, a public defender dedicated to representing all the people of District 3, not just Capitol Hill — but two of the strongest contenders — incumbent Kshama Sawant and challengers Logan Bowers —  held their campaign launches last week. CHS stopped through to see who showed up and ask why they support the candidates. Click through the galleries to see their answers. Continue reading

Bowers steps up effort to unseat Sawant with ethics complaint over Socialist Alternative influence

Allegations from the new complaint

Reporting by CHS and SCC Insight has led to a Seattle Ethics and Elections Commission complaint against Kshama Sawant from a political opponent seeking to unseat the Socialist Alternative veteran from her seat on the Seattle City Council.

“Kshama is using her office to do work on behalf of the Socialist Alternative organization and she appears to be attempting to shield that work from public disclosure laws,” Logan Bowers tells CHS about the new complaint.

In it, Bowers alleges Sawant “permitted the use of city funds and personnel by the Socialist Alternative party” and that she and staff “have been using 3rd party communications services to conduct City of Seattle business,” a violation of state law.

“While I expect that these apparent violations of city and State law will ultimately be adjudicated at the ballot box, I believe for the health our democratic institutions the voters of District 3 and Seattle deserve to know definitively the extent and legality of council member Sawant’s actions during her tenure in office,” Bowers writes. Continue reading