Election 2009: McGinn up by almost 5,000; Mallahan concedes

November 9, 2009 at 4:31 pm | In General Election 2009, West Seattle news | 43 Comments

(Chas Redmond photo from McGinn HQ on Election Night last Tuesday)
Just out from King County – in the still-unsettled Seattle Mayor’s race:

Mike McGinn 96514 50.88%
Joe Mallahan 91575 48.28%

See for yourself here. Citywide media sources say Mallahan plans to talk with reporters at 5. 4:42 PM UPDATE: City Council President Richard Conlin has already congratulated Mayor-Elect McGinn:

On behalf of the Council, I want to congratulate our new Mayor-elect, Michael McGinn. Michael has a great track record of working for the people of Seattle. I’m very optimistic about the partnership we have the opportunity to create between the Council and the incoming Mayor. We are committed to ensuring a smooth transition as he takes on his new role.

I also want to commend Joe Mallahan and his supporters for their commitment and passion for public service. It was a hard fought race that raised many important issues that our city will face in the coming years.

We have many challenges ahead, including the economic recovery of our region, managing our budget in a difficult time, strengthening regional connections, and building a new green economy.

I remember when I began my career as a Councilmember in 1998 and what it was like to have partners willing to work with me, sharing the same vision and goals. I, and my colleagues on the Council, offer the same support and partnership to our incoming mayor.

We look forward to working together to make Seattle the best city it can be.

5:05 PM UPDATE: Mallahan has conceded. ADDED 7:33 PM: Video of McGinn speaking tonight, uploaded to YouTube by The Stranger:


  1. This is an example of when democracy goes terribly wrong.

    Comment by CB — 6:14 pm November 9, 2009 #

  2. ….. Wow, Democracy has gone “Terribly wrong”???!! Why would you say something like that?… because YOUR candidate didn’t win???

    Comment by Dano Beal — 6:39 pm November 9, 2009 #

  3. I like Mike!

    Comment by KateMcA — 6:43 pm November 9, 2009 #

  4. Me Like Mike Too!!!

    Comment by mark — 6:53 pm November 9, 2009 #

  5. What Mr. Beal said!

    Comment by timeslid — 7:02 pm November 9, 2009 #

  6. I like Mike too–I have a whole lot of hope for this little corner of blue america. I have to admit to being one of those “teach Nickels a lesson,” voters — but I kinda like this whole new school. :-)

    Comment by charlabob — 7:06 pm November 9, 2009 #

  7. ditto Dano

    Comment by Diane — 7:07 pm November 9, 2009 #

  8. Wonderful. Just marvelous.
    A guy who will polarize us further AND drive business out of the city. GREAT choice, Seattle!
    Seattle’s great and long history of obstructionism now enters a chapter in which it can become epic – an example for hippies everywhere who want to make sure that no progress is ever made, on ANYTHING.
    But hey, West-Seattleites – great news! Now maybe we can get car traffic shut down COMPLETELY on Fauntleroy to make it a bike-and-pedestrian-only promenade! California Avenue too!
    Nickels must be laughing his *** off. The King is gone – long live the King!

    Comment by Jose — 7:24 pm November 9, 2009 #

  9. well…time to sell my car, as it wont be worth anything in a few years.

    also time to dust off the old bike and try to go to the grocery store, the dry cleaners, and pick up my daughter on two wheels.

    Didnt anyone realize that McGinn is a lawyer, the lowest form of life. I am SURE he can be trusted.

    Comment by toddinwestwood — 7:33 pm November 9, 2009 #

  10. I have apprehension about our new hizzoner, and hope to be wrong. I believe Conlin’s remark about looking forward to a “partner” in that the council wants more collective power…stay tuned.

    Comment by Denny — 7:42 pm November 9, 2009 #

  11. I cannot wait for the day when 110,000 cars use the surface streets in Seattle. But…not to worry…by the time this joker is done, there will be no businesses in Seattle.

    Will the last person leaving Seattle Please Turn Off The Lights.

    Comment by Michael — 7:47 pm November 9, 2009 #

  12. Yeah, “just like that” the cyclists will take over. Bwhahahahaha.

    Comment by Al — 7:49 pm November 9, 2009 #

  13. hey toddinwestwood; I work with kidlets and certainly prefer to shuttle them in a car, but I see A LOT of parents riding bikes with kids in tow in those kiddy trailers; also recently saw a dad with his preschooler both riding bikes to take the bus
    I think many people in this town would ride bikes more if the roads were safer for bicycles, more dedicated bike lanes please!!!
    when we get more light rail, kids LOVE riding; me too!!!
    Hurrah for the guy who won Mayor while riding his bike all over Seattle; awesome!!!

    Comment by Diane — 7:56 pm November 9, 2009 #

  14. Good grief…
    Get a grip folks.
    If he’s that bad, we get another new one in four years.

    Comment by old timer — 7:58 pm November 9, 2009 #

  15. I for one would like to see more done for bicycles in this town and honestly don’t believe it has to come at the expense of cars. Much. McGinn isn’t going to fight the 99 tunnel now that the council has passed it and he’ll seek to prevent the city from bearing the cost of any overruns. Sounds about right to me.

    Mallahan would have made Nickels’ sucking up to Paul Allen and downtown developers look like nothing. I’m not without some reservations about McGinn’s ability to work with the council and how ideological he may be, but this was the guy I’d rather go forward with.

    Comment by WS Steve — 8:03 pm November 9, 2009 #

  16. I voted for Mcginn, Mallahan was an awful choice. But I’m not gonna get all Obama on the guy (I’ll save that for the “progressive” yuppies). From this day forward McGinn will bear the brunt of my derision. That’s what politicians deserve.

    Comment by seven — 8:08 pm November 9, 2009 #

  17. What were Mallahan’s qualifications that made anyone so enamored of him? Overpaid corporate exec? Not saying Mallahan isn’t a decent guy, but qualified?

    I’m sick of self-righteous corporate execs.

    Comment by I. Ponder — 9:22 pm November 9, 2009 #

  18. Neither were/are qualified. just another case of lesser of two evils,no matter who you voted for.

    Comment by ToddinWestwood — 9:58 pm November 9, 2009 #

  19. WSB: It would be useful to post the results for West Seattle. I’m not sure if the final data is in, but Mallahan got about 56% of the vote in WS the last time I checked. McGinn just scared way too many of us to vote for him, he is even further out of touch with WS than is Mallahan. This was a race between two very bad candidates for our community.

    Comment by wseye — 10:48 pm November 9, 2009 #

  20. wseye…then it is up to us to make sure that he becomes very familiar with West Seattle, and keep him in touch.

    Comment by JanS — 11:52 pm November 9, 2009 #

  21. What a mess. The guy who couldn’t even run the parks levy committee is now going to run the city.

    Comment by AceMotel — 11:58 pm November 9, 2009 #

  22. let me know when the sky starts falling, mkay?
    looks to me like we just might have an outsider who will stand up to bullies like martin selig. after all, we west seattleites wouldn’t be complaining about the viaduct if nickels and his fat cat friends hadn’t killed the monorail.

    Comment by mar3c — 6:48 am November 10, 2009 #

  23. More bike lanes? Srsly? I’m a runner. I’m fit. I get the whole “green living” thing. But I’m never, ever gonna bike to work on Seattle streets. I don’t care how many bike lanes you build and how “safe” you tell me it is. It’s freaking cold and wet 9 months of the year, it’s never gonna feel safe enough to me, I’m not bringing all my work clothes/makeup/etc to shower and change at work, and I just frankly don’t wanna bicycle everywhere. And bikes hurt my butt.
    Good gawd, this city is lame sometimes.

    Comment by Kayleigh — 8:03 am November 10, 2009 #

  24. exactly acemotel
    we’ll see.

    Comment by sam — 8:19 am November 10, 2009 #

  25. Kayleigh that’s your opinion, but there’s thousands of cyclists in this city who do need/want the infrastructure. It’s a legitimate transportation CHOICE for those of us who CHOOSE to use a bicycle for transportation. We are not forcing anyone onto a bicycle. It’s about providing transportaion options for a large city.

    Comment by Al — 8:32 am November 10, 2009 #

  26. Al, it’s a choice for a very small segment of the public who seems to think that more people will join them if only….yeahright.
    My point is that most of us won’t join them. We don’t want to. And the city shouldn’t be sculpted around the needs of a small group of people. That’s tilting at windmills and not sound long-term planning.
    For the record, I don’t own a car. I hate cars. I support light rail and general mass transit.
    Is this really the same city who put on two World’s Fairs? No way. We’re fighting over potholes and bike lanes and skate parks. Lame.

    Comment by Kayleigh — 8:48 am November 10, 2009 #

  27. It’s time for the City Council to step up and challenge and lead the Mayor, considering the many years that the City Council served as the lapdogs to successive mayors.

    McGinn ran a much better campaign, reaching out to people and enunciating who he is, whereas Mallahan tried to build coalitions behind the scenes, which led to confusion about what he really stands for.

    I think Nickles lost in part because many people felt he was overly focused on burnishing his environmental credentials as opposed to managing the details of the city — and what do we elect in his place but Mr Sierra Club himself!

    I really, really hope one or two practical leaders emerge from the Council ranks to challenge the Mayor, set solid, balanced priorities and make this a better city for all.

    Comment by rw — 9:02 am November 10, 2009 #

  28. It’s time for the City Council to step up and challenge and lead the Mayor, considering the many years that the City Council served as the lapdogs to successive mayors.

    McGinn ran a much better campaign, reaching out to people and enunciating who he is, whereas Mallahan tried to build coalitions behind the scenes, which led to confusion about what he really stands for.

    I think Nickles lost in part because many people felt he was overly focused on burnishing his environmental credentials as opposed to managing the details of the city — and what do we elect in his place but Mr Sierra Club himself!

    I really, really hope one or two practical leaders emerge from the Council ranks to challenge the Mayor, set solid, balanced priorities and make this a better city for all.

    P.S. I like the Sierra Club, I just don’t want them running my city.

    Comment by rw — 9:08 am November 10, 2009 #

  29. The liberals have spoken. McCheese number 2 not only won, but he crushed the point spread by a mile.

    Comment by jiggers — 10:16 am November 10, 2009 #

  30. Kayleigh, It looks like you’re saying McGinn Bad because Bikes hurt my Butt. I’m sure that’s probably not what you meant, but that’s how it reads to me.

    I’d like a mayor who’s thinking how Seattle will look when the oil runs out and when the seas rise a few feet. If we in West Seattle think we’re all going to get to downtown in our solar powered cars through an underwater tunnel (that doesn’t even have a downtown exit) maybe we’re not thinking this through.

    The guy ran a great campaign and won the election – let’s work together for a better Seattle.

    Comment by JAT — 10:23 am November 10, 2009 #

  31. God help us all this nut job will put this city in ruins!!!

    Comment by Silly Goose — 10:27 am November 10, 2009 #

  32. Kayleigh, no one is trying or even saying you must ride your bike. We have sidewalks, crosswalks, bike lanes, etc. for those who are not in a motor vehicle. To *help* with overall infrastructure saftey. You know there are many drivers who don’t want to support your bus/train, right? They see YOU as a problem, a minorty so why should they support your bus/rail option; they don’t use it after all.

    It’s, again, about providing transportation options for a city as a whole, not for the “majority” only.

    Comment by Al — 10:55 am November 10, 2009 #

  33. It takes very little to tip the financial and economic balance of city into the negative. We’ve experienced a literal flood of businesses leaving our ‘great’ city – from Boeing on down the line. Not just major corporations, but small to mid-sized businesses going to Kent, Auburn or even out of State. I have yet to hear the mayor-elect propose how he is going to stem this tide (see GM Nameplate for the next business candidate to leave town…)

    Kowtowing to the ‘businessman’ is one thing, but creating a positive economic environment is another. Spending money on bike lanes isn’t going to keep jobs and tax revenue in this city. I lived through the Boeing Bust of the early 1970′s and it doesn’t take a lot of effort to arrive back to those times again.

    I’m not asking us to pave greenbelts or give away treasure to developers. I am requesting a common sense agenda that puts bike lanes and jobs on a common footing.

    Comment by Tony S — 11:06 am November 10, 2009 #

  34. JAT, that’s an interesting conclusion, seeing as how I didn’t mention McGinn at all. If we really want to work together, then I think we need to get over the tunnel phobia. It’s probably the best solution, even if imperfect, and we do not need more years of fighting about it while nothing is done.
    Al, if you are missing the “build the city around a minority” concept, I’m not sure how else to spell it out for you. I never said we shouldn’t have biking and bike lanes as an option; I said it shouldn’t be the centerpiece. I still believe that, no matter how many cyclists believe otherwise. We have a greater chance of getting people out of their cars and into light rail than onto bikes, don’t you think?

    Comment by Kayleigh — 11:10 am November 10, 2009 #

  35. Oh no, the sky is falling, the sky is falling, we elected an environmentalist mayor!! I am sure he dropped out of some local community college before he put his Birkenstocks on for the first time. Hmm, he actually attended Williams College (my 1180 SAT score wouldn’t have got me in) and then went to UW Law School. Yea, I am sure he is in way over his head….pssst, check out the “qualifications” of Mayors of other larger cities, you might be surprised.

    Comment by mark — 11:45 am November 10, 2009 #

  36. MM a much better speaker and at least spent some time listening the WSites. Where was JM, and his public speaking and charisma factor zero. As for McGinn, from what I’ve heard and read he needs all the help he can get from a good support staff.

    Hope Greg N. comes out of retirement in four years!

    Comment by Dunno — 11:45 am November 10, 2009 #

  37. McCheese number 2 coming our way.

    Comment by jiggers — 2:28 pm November 10, 2009 #

  38. Kayleigh, run to work… if the weather is too poor for you 9 months of the year, feel free to run to CA :-D

    Comment by :-D — 2:43 pm November 10, 2009 #

  39. Seattleites just don’t get it. It doesn’t matter who becomes mayor the problems he faces when he takes office will be the same. By the end of next year tax revenue will be down another 20% and there won’t be enough money to run the city much less build new bike lanes or a waterfront tunnel. City employees, brace yourselves because the city budget is about to take a big hit!

    Comment by greenthum — 12:20 am November 11, 2009 #

  40. Kayliegh, agree with you on your point about a greater chance of getting people onto a bus or train. Absolutely! I am all for getting better, more intelligent, mass transportation – especially to West Seattle – around this city. I don’t ride my bicycle 7 days a week and sometimes rely on the bus to get around. I don’t agree that cycling infrastructure is a “centerpiece.” I attend the Seattle Bicycle Advisory board every month and see how cyclists have to literally argue for better infrastructure and acknowledgement that cyclists are actually effected by how it’s implemented for our own safety. If cycling infrastructure was taking away from vehicles, then entire roadways would be dedicated to cyclists…get rid of parking and all motor vehicle traffic. THAT would be putting cyclists first and SDOT won’t touch it with a ten foot pole. As it is motor vehicles come first, then pedestrians and cyclists. Attend an SDOT or SBAB meeting regarding the viaduct street construction plan. The order of importance is: 1) cars 2) freight 3) metro/bus 4) pedestrians and cyclists..by far last in the planning.

    Comment by Al — 11:02 am November 11, 2009 #

  41. Kayliegh, you rock. Separated at birth, we are. ;-)

    Comment by Jose — 4:00 pm November 11, 2009 #

  42. al,
    tunnel vision actually puts trains/rapid transit dead last. the bike lane which links west seattle and ballard is nearly complete. and it will be complete once the viaduct is dropped and the surface street rebuilt.
    meanwhile, if you want to bus to ballard with 80 of your closest friends – or anywhere else north of downtown – you have to make at least one transfer. and it takes an hour.
    the city should have demanded right-of-way for some kind of rail through downtown (other than BNSF/amtrak) as part of any tunnel/viaduct/highway deal that involves city money.
    yadatrot: mcginn has stated that he will make sure the city gets its money’s worth from the new highway 99. let’s hope he has the cojones to stand up for the people of this city, as big out-of-state developers and contractors come wallowing to the construction money trough.

    Comment by mar3c — 5:51 am November 12, 2009 #

  43. I’ve been sending emails and participating in public meetings regarding the viaduct issues and total lack of mass transportation planning. You are wrong that buses/trains come in dead last. Again, the order of discussion and planning for traffic in that area is: 1) personal vehicles, i.e. cars 2) frieght 3) BUSES, TRAINS and STREETCARs 4) only last in the planning is routes for peds and cyclists; this comes AFTER all the other motor vehicle and transit routes are pretty much worked out. How many meetings have you attended?

    “the bike lane which links west seattle and ballard is nearly complete. and it will be complete once the viaduct is dropped and the surface street rebuilt.” What bike lane linking West Seattle and Ballard? Exactly where? This does not exist. There’s a series of bicycle ROUTES but there’s no single bike lane…no parking has been removed for any bike route and although lanes may have been reconfigured here and there (moreover 15th got dedicated BUS lanes) traffic still seems to be moving just fine.

    I am in AGREEMENT with both you mar3c and Kayliegh, and I argue publicly that transit needs dedicated lanes, ROW and more options, period. But leaving bicycle and pedestrian planning out of the picture is also short-sighted.

    Comment by Al — 8:49 am November 12, 2009 #

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