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Response to Amazon cash helps Sawant secure key new allies — her fellow council members

González, Sawant, Mosqueda, and Morales at Thursday’s protest (Image: @TeresaCMosqueda)

It is too early to say if Amazon’s massive injections of cash into Seattle City Council races has backfired but it has helped District 3 incumbent Kshama Sawant earn a key victory she had so far failed to win on her own in her battle against challenger Egan Orion — the support of her fellow council members.

Friday morning, Sawant’s campaign made the official announcement of key endorsements for the Socialist Alternative candidate from the council’s two citywide representatives — Teresa Mosqueda and Lorena González.

“It is critical that progressives and socialists are uniting against big business and their blatant attempt to buy the elections,” Sawant said in a statement on the endorsements. “We stand together in saying that Seattle is not for sale! These corporate interests don’t just want to defeat me and other progressive candidates like Shaun Scott and Tammy Morales, they want to roll back the historic victories working people have won in Seattle, like the $15/hour minimum wage, the hotel workers bill of rights, and our landmark renters rights policies.”

The move from Mosqueda and González follows their appearance Thursday with Sawant at a protest outside the Amazon Spheres against the company’s decision to pump some $1.5 million into the downtown chamber of commerce’s PAC and support of candidates championing business friendly — and anti-head tax — platforms.

Both the citywide representatives are supporting Sawant as part of a slate of candidates who are being targeted by much of Amazon and the chamber’s spending — Lisa Herbold in D1, Tammy Morales in D2, Shaun Scott in D4, Dan Strauss in D6, and Andrew Lewis in D7. Incumbent Debora Juarez in D5, meanwhile, doesn’t make the progressive roster — she won the support of the downtown chamber against conservative Ann Davison Sattler.

“Here in Seattle, we’ve elected pro-worker, pro-union champions and we are unapologetic in our fight to build worker power. That’s why corporations are running scared and have dumped millions into Seattle City Council races because they want to roll back our progressive gains. This election – stand with the workers and voters who demand their voices and votes count, and against the million-dollar check aimed at buying this election,” Mosqueda said in the statement announcing her Sawant support. “​I urge District 3 residents to vote for Kshama Sawant, who I’m proud to serve with on City Council, so we can continue to fight for workers’ rights, and show that our democracy is not for sale.”

“With Amazon fighting all of us, it’s not about whether you’re a Democrat or a socialist. What matters is our movement, our call to build a more just city, fundamentally built on our progressive values,” González said. “​That’s why I urge District 3 voters to support Kshama Sawant, along with the slate of progressive candidates running in other districts.​”

Even as part of the larger effort for the Amazon-targeted slate, the move by Mosqueda and González to embrace Sawant is a big shift. In the Primary, both chose to endorse Zachary DeWolf. Though his challenge to Sawant ultimately fizzled, the decision showed criticism of Sawant’s style and collaboration on the council had done real damage to her relationships in City Hall.

González’s efforts also help set the stage for her proposed campaign finance legislation that would ban donations of more than $5,000 to Seattle PACs and would ban donations by “foreign-influenced corporations.”

Mosqueda, meanwhile, co-sponsored the head tax legislation that was approved and quickly repealed in the summer of 2018 and has now apparently inspired Amazon’s cash-flushed approach to civic involvement.

The October 23rd edition of the Stranger (Image: Calvin Priest via Facebook)

In Friday’s announcement, Sawant’s campaign also said State Senator Rebecca Saldaña and Washington State House Representative Nicole Macri​ had joined the incumbent’s endorsement roster.

No city council members have endorsed Orion’s campaign though he did receive the endorsement of King County Executive Dow Constantine and Macri’s fellow 43rd District Rep. Jamie Pedersen. Former mayor and city council member Tim Burgess — who now runs a business and public safety-focused PAC — has also endorsed the Broadway Business Improvement Area head and PrideFest founder.

Sawant’s campaign, meanwhile, also pulled off another surprising move this week in the wake of Orion’s decision to pay $1,000 to settle a campaign ethics complaint over his recent $6,300 cover advertisement on The Stranger. Sawant how has her own Stranger cover placement and the Capitol Hill paper, presumably, has made another $6,300 on the race for District 3. As many will note, this advertisement has the required campaign disclosure in plain sight.

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25 thoughts on “Response to Amazon cash helps Sawant secure key new allies — her fellow council members

  1. Wasn’t it Lorena Gonzalez that ignored the man at the city council meeting a few months back? I would love the entire city council to be up for re-election…This doesn’t sway anything for me. They are just as terrible at running this city as Sawant. Girl Bye!

  2. I guess Lorena Gonzalez has forgotten what she previously said of Sawant, “I have found that there is almost a non-working relationship between her and myself, and frankly, anyone else on the floor.” Source -The Strainger 08/05/19. You may all be making nice now, but Sawant will burn you in the end Councilmembers. She is generous with condemnation and greedy when giving credit. That is why noone, especially those such as Gonzalez and Mosqueda, who she has described so many times as corporate politicians, can work with her.

  3. Like fucking Sawant raised all her money locally? She’s got thousands of signs fucking everywhere and her dumbass imported astro turf people knocking on our goddamn doors every day. It’s such bullshit. If she put a quarter of the effort into actually doing the job as she does to screeching when it’s time for reelection people wouldn’t hate her nearly so much. she’s a sad screeching huxter clown.

    • You should see some of her yard signs on Capitol Hill. Aw, they’re all inked over and bent and the signs on the utility poles are painted over in black. Gee, who would do such a thing? My dogs lifted their legs on a few; but, hey, so did the homeless.

  4. Amazon can’t buy city hall, but Sawant does buy from $1,400+ spent on by Sawant’s campaign team for office supplies. She’s a hypocrite.

  5. Sawant supporters have broken into our building not once but twice, littering doors with trashy posters. This behavior alone has turned all people inside against her, and frankly should be publically shamed for such illegal behavior.
    Maybe we could have got there, who knows, but children belong in school, and she behaves like one.

    • Same here, found over 200 flyers left on our decorative table in the lobby. We only have about 30 people in the building. Our cleaning service threw them in the recycle bin. She must have had thousands upon thousands of those printed.

  6. I’d rather have a councilperson who received Amazon money, which carries no specific strings, vs. those who over the years have been bought and paid for by SEIU, who hand writes legislation that they pass and in general has pandered to the most radical elements of organized labor.

  7. Let’s not forget that Sawant actively campaigned against Hilary Clinton in 2016 saying that there was not much difference between voting for her or Trump. She campaigned at a national level and told progressives to vote for Jil Stein. Let that one sink in.

    Anger is seemingly the overriding priority for both the far left and far right. Anger uber alles.