Happening now: 34th District Democrats’ endorsement meeting

(scroll down for continuous updates from the 34th DDs’ meeting in Fauntleroy)

We’re at The Hall at Fauntleroy as the 34th District Democrats get ready to vote on their primary-election endorsements. Most of the major candidates are here, as is a crowd of hundreds. As-it-happens updates, and more photos, to come. Above, the scene inside the hall; here’s Mayor Nickels arriving, with wife Sharon Nickels hugging a friend in the foreground:

7:19 PM UPDATE: Chair Tim Nuse is calling the meeting to order – a bit late – some folks were good-naturedly chanting “LET’S GO, LET’S GO, LET’S GO!” Former chair Ivan Weiss has just led the crowd in the Pledge of Allegiance. Short speeches will be given on behalf of candidates before the vote. Seattle City Council Position 8 is the first endorsement that’ll be made. Voting tonight will be done on paper ballots. Nuse explains that a candidate needs 2/3 majority for the endorsement. If no one gets that on the first ballot, the top two will advance to another vote.

(Tim Nuse at left, Stephen Lamphear at right)
Rule change – before that Seattle Council endorsement: The first endorsements, however, are being made in a block vote – including “No” on the Tim Eyman initiative 1033, Rob Holland for Port of Seattle Position 3, Max Vekich for Port of Seattle Position 4, Brian Bennett for Burien City Council Position 7 – this will be a voice vote.

7:29 PM: The block endorsement passes. Now, the Seattle Council Position 8 endorsements, with candidates being nominated – then speeches will be made before voting. So far, Rusty Williams, David Miller, and Bobby Forch have been spoken for. Next, Jordan Royer. (After him, the nominees to be spoken for are Mike O’Brien and Robert Rosencrantz. This is the position that Richard McIver holds now.) Susan Harmon spoke for him – now it’s Royer himself. Brian Allen is speaking for O’Brien – “We have a lot of really great candidates for Position 8” – now he’s ceding to O’Brien, who included an anti-tunnel line in his speech. (Speeches are limited to 2 minutes, regardless of how many people speak for and against a candidate. So far no one has chosen to speak against any particylar candidate.) Walter Sive is now speaking (7:45 pm) for Rosencrantz … who then on his behalf says Seattle needs to get ready because “the 2nd industrial revolution is coming.” (7:48 pm) The ballots are being filled out for Seattle Council Position 8.

Four minutes later – they’ve all been collected and are about to be counted.

The next position to be considered is Burien City Council #1 (while the previous race’s ballots are counted) – we won’t be writing about that in detail since it’s outside our area.

8:11 PM: 1st vote count – nobody for Position 8 got 2/3 majority so David Miller (48 votes) and Robert Rosencrantz (37 votes) advance to Round 2. Ballots are being collected. (8:22 pm, still being counted, and they announced, NO endorsement on Burien Council #1 – now they’re handing out ballots for the next position, Port Commissioner #1, before announcing Seattle Council #1 results – There are two nominations in Port #1, John Creighton and no endorsement – Stephen Lamphear (who BTW is a former Burien City Councilmember) says he recommends NO ENDORSEMENT because “there are no Democrats in the race”) – Marcee Stone says, “I know John has struggled with his Democratic identity at times, but he IS a Democrat .. he is an environmentalist.” Now Creighton is speaking (incumbent running for re-election). He says “We still have a lot of work to do, that’s why I’m running for re-election.” Chris Porter (who’s been keeping time tonight) spoke against Creighton; another attendee spoke for him. Cherisse Luxa is now speaking against Creighton, reading from the by-laws. She says Creighton didn’t say he’s a Democrat when answering a questionnaire.

SEATTLE CITY COUNCIL POSITION 8 SECOND BALLOT: Miller 99, Rosencrantz 72, neither got a two-thirds majority, the THIRD ballot now will go “dual endorsement or no endorsement.” Chair Nuse just announced that the 34th District Democrats’ endorsed County Executive candidate, Dow Constantine, has a poll lead over “other Democrats” in the race but needs more support, and he’s mentioning a phone bank, Grand Parade marching, etc. (8:42 pm) Vote-counting still under way. Nuse now has announced 34th DDs’ summer picnic for July 21st at Lincoln Park, and August 14th for the Garden Party fundraiser at West Seattle Nursery. Gatewood resident New York Vinnie will emcee (he’s here tonight BTW).

8:47 PM: Results for Seattle Port Commission #1 – 55% no endorsement, 43% Creighton. No second ballot, so no position in this race. Now nominations are being taken for Position 4 – West Seattle’s Dorsol Plants nominated first, Sally Bagshaw next, David Bloom next. That’s it for this race. Ex-chair Weiss speaking for Plants. Weiss gave a fiery speech – we’ve got it on video we hope to add later. Bagshaw says she’s here “to do some ‘splainin'” about “why (she worked for) 3 Republicans.” She says she worked for Norm Maleng because he worked on social justice issues; she says she worked for Dan Satterberg because she believes in what he did; and as a lawyer for the King County Council, she advised Rob McKenna. She is defending work she did with him such as transit-oriented development. She says this is no place for party labels. Michael Taylor-Judd is speaking against her nomination, saying he agrees to some degree but says that you don’t send letters seeking endorsement and funding for Republicans and then come ask for Democrats’ votes. He got big cheers. Rep. Sharon Nelson spoke for Bagshaw:

David Bloom spoke for himself and derided money being spent on the Mercer Mess, among other things. That’s it for the nomination speeches in this race – voting will begin.

RESULTS IN SEATTLE COUNCIL POSITION 8 – David Miller and Robert Rosencrantz dual endorsement (74% voted for dual endorsement, 26% for no endorsement). Here’s video of Pete Spalding’s nomination speech earlier for Miller, followed by the candidate himself (didn’t get Rosencrantz on video):

9:07 PM: Opening nominations for Seattle Council #2 – West Seattleite David Ginsberg, incumbent Council President Richard Conlin are the nominees. Sen. Joe McDermott spoke for Ginsberg. Then Ginsberg himself: “Nothing would mean more to me than your endorsement.” Kim Becklund speaking for Conlin. For Conlin, Kim Becklund spoke about his environmental achievements; Conlin himself echoed that. Voting is now under way for this position.

9:15 PM: There’s going to be a second ballot for Seattle Council Position 4 – the first ballot ended with Plants 35%, Bagshaw 40%, Bloom 20% – since nobody got two-thirds, there’s a second ballot with Plants and Bagshaw. Here’s Plants, photographed a bit earlier in the meeting:

Voting on that second ballot is under way now. And we’re awaiting results of Ginsberg/Conlin.

9:27 PM UPDATE: Still awaiting vote counts. Chair Tim Nuse has announced 209 credentialed members of the 34th DDs are in the house tonight. He’s also announced donation-seeking for a variety of organizations, including “the homeless camp calling itself Nickelsville.” Marcee Stone is announcing a “Hoe-Down for Dow” fundraiser for County Executive candidate Constantine, at Puget Ridge Co-Housing on July 26th. (photo added later – a lot of this is waiting – Dorsol Plants, Richard Conlin, city attorney and West Seattleite Tom Carr on the sidelines):

9:35 PM UPDATE: It’s been announced that in Position 2, 123 votes were needed for an endorsement – Ginsberg got 122 – so it’s been challenged that two “spoiled ballots” should not have been included in the total from which the 123 was derived to say what constitutes two-thirds. Nuse is citing from Robert’s Rules of Order. (9:41 pm update) Challenges and discussions continue. One motion has been made to revote this race. There’s disagreement over what’s a spoiled ballot and what’s a blank ballot. Marcee Stone suggested that Nuse doesn’t have to go with what the parliamentarian (Lamphear) says. Nuse says he goes with the rules. Now a motion to hand-vote the race, rather than ballot-vote.

9:55 PM UPDATE: Now this race goes to a written second ballot – because in the hand-count revote, 158 votes were cast, Ginsberg got 102, Conlin 56, but 106 votes were needed for two-thirds. The second ballot is for “dual endorsement or no endorsement” just like the Miller/Rosencrantz vote earlier. Someone near us says, “Why not just dual-endorse everybody and get out of here?” And moments later, it was announced that in the second ballot of Council Position 4 the results were Plants 50.3%, Bagshaw 48.6%, so that too goes to a “dual endorsement vs. no endorsement” revote now. It’ll be done by paper ballot – Nuse’s proposal to do a hand vote was challenged.

10:05 PM: While those votes are counted, it’s on to the Seattle City Attorney‘s race. West Seattleite Tom Carr vs. challenger Pete Holmes. Ex-chair Ivan Weiss bellows, “TOM CARR!” Dorsol Plants yells, “PETE HOLMES!” … After speeches, it’s time for a vote in this race. There is a motion to suspend the rules and conduct every further vote tonight by hand vote rather than paper ballots.

10:17 PM: Dual endorsements announced for Ginsberg and Conlin, and for Plants and Bagshaw.

10:26 PM: In the midst of speeches for mayoral nominations. Michael McGinn is the first candidate to speak on his own behalf – Vlad Oustimovitch spoke for City Councilmember Jan Drago, State Sen. Joe McDermott spoke for Mayor Greg Nickels. McGinn mentioned his opposition to the tunnel. Oustimovitch mentioned that Drago had tried to salvage the monorail and when that failed, he says she said, “West Seattle got screwed,” adding, “She was right.” Next candidates nominated, Joe Mallahan (who related an anecdote involving West Seattle’s Holy Rosary and his childhood) and Norman Sigler. No one spoke on James Donaldson’s behalf. Now the voting will begin, though there’s some question about whether a candidate can be voted on if not nominated by a voting member. Sigler will be removed from consideration as a result. Vote-counting under way now. Mallahan’s mention of Holy Rosary, by the way, turns out to be regarding his uncle.

10:39 PM UPDATE: Now to Seattle City Council Position 6 – Nick Licata, Marty Kaplan, Jessie Israel nominated. Licata said he wants to be re-elected to work on a “Sustainable Seattle.” Kaplan says, “You’ve got a choice in this race … it’s an interesting choice.” Israel notes Rep. Nelson and Cascade Bicycle Club have endorsed her.

10:48 PM: Tom Carr receives Seattle City Attorney endorsement of 34th DDs with 68% of the vote. (minutes later) Mayor first ballot – nobody got two-thirds – Nickels got 52 percent, McGinn got 19%, they are top two and go to next ballot.

11:00 PM: Seattle Council Position 6 – Licata got 55% of vote and Israel 40% of vote so they go to a second ballot. We are now in Hour 5 of this meeting. It’s just been announced that King County Council chair and already-endorsed-by-this-group County Executive candidate Dow Constantine is here.

11:08 PM: Just announced, neither Nickels nor McGinn got two-thirds support on second ballot – 64% for Nickels, 35% for McGinn. Now a third ballot will decide on dual endorsement or no endorsement. And meantime they’re moving on to decide what to vote on the bag fee (Seattle Referendum 1). Ann Martin is speaking in favor of it, holding up cloth bags: “This is a big step for our environment.” (A vote FOR the referendum would be a vote in favor of the 20-cent fee for non-reusable shopping bags.) There was also a speaker against – and now Sharon Huling is speaking in favor – saying plastic pollution is “a critical problem.” Cherisse Luxa follows that up by speaking against the bag fee – saying it’s a “regressive” fee. And then, speakers for and against REJECTING the bag fee – Chris Porter, against rejecting: “The planet cannot wait.” Heather Trim of People for Puget Sound held up a small bottle she said contained evidence of plastic pollution in the ocean, blamed partly on bags:

11:24 PM: Just announced, neither Licata nor Israel got two-thirds majority in the second ballot in their council race – so it goes to third ballot (like many other races tonight), “dual endorsement or no endorsement.” We’re also still awaiting results of the same third-ballot “dual or no” vote in Seattle mayor, which is Nickels vs. McGinn.

11:33 PM: Neither side in the bag fee got two-thirds … “yes” came close, 64% … so the 34th DDs take “no position” on that. Now they’re taking up the North Highline Annexation (whether south White Center and other parts of the unincorporated area will agree to be annexed by Burien). A motion to endorse has made from the floor. King County Council Chair Dow Constantine and former Burien City Councilmember Stephen Lamphear have spoken for it – “There is one Highline,” says Lamphear, saying he wanted to annex ALL of North Highline even back when he was on the council; Sharon Maeda has spoken against the proposal. On a hand vote, the 34th DDs support the annexation proposal.

11:48 PM: Now miscellaneous matters. Judge Anne Ellington has been endorsed. The “Decline to Sign” movement to keep an anti-gay-rights referendum off the ballot is supported. Now there are motions to endorse Charlie Mas or Betty Patu for the school board seat that Cheryl Chow is leaving. Leslie Harris is speaking in favor of Mas and recommends people check out his writings at saveseattleschools.blogspot.com. She called him “briliant” and noted he has “lots of experience being a gadfly.” Christi Stapleton speaks for Patu and notes she worked at West Seattle’s now-closed Cooper Elementary for many years. This race now goes to a paper ballot.

11:57 PM UPDATE: Meeting adjourned after it was noted that the School Board district is not in the 34th’s turf (although in the GENERAL election, all school board seats are voted on citywide). Almost five hours. Will file a separate item with more photos as well as succinct list of who was endorsed for what.

EARLY THURSDAY UPDATE: The 34th DDs’ official account is on their website at 34dems.org.

9 Replies to "Happening now: 34th District Democrats' endorsement meeting"

  • Jackie July 8, 2009 (8:33 pm)

    Thanks for the great play-by-play which is gold for those of us who couldn’t make it. Vekich for POS #4. YESS!

  • chris arkills July 9, 2009 (1:40 am)

    This report really gives the reader a sense of the meeting. Great job, WSB!

  • Christi S July 9, 2009 (2:22 am)

    Good work, Tracy. West Seattle Blog rocks!

  • Jessie Israel July 9, 2009 (8:15 am)

    Great play-by-play, Tracy! And THANK YOU 34th LD and West Seattle Democratic Women for your endorsements!

  • great recap! July 9, 2009 (11:33 am)

    Do you happen to have the actual numbers in the Mayoral race vote (besides the percentages)?

  • WSB July 9, 2009 (11:49 am)

    Sorry, at that point they just put up 52% Nickels 19% McGinn after the first ballot – and not how everybody else turned out. (I just doublechecked the Twitter feed we were putting out with such things as it happened in addition to the live-publishing here
    I will inquire whether the raw numbers overall will be available at some point – the 34th DDs often post such microdetails to their site but they’re not there at the moment .. TR

  • Lou and Carol Frillman July 9, 2009 (9:00 pm)

    David Ginsberg won the popular endorsement of the 34th last night, for Seattle City Council Seat 2, by a 2 to 1 vote. Despite the best efforts of the powers that be, nothing can change the fact that, by a resounding margin, West Seattle 34th Democrats voted a leadership change For The City We Love.

    Make no mistake; we are challenging a powerful incumbent. The odds are against us. The establishment is telling us it can’t happen. The” powers that be” are working actively against us.

    But we’ve been here before, haven’t we?

  • Tamsen Spengler July 10, 2009 (3:24 pm)

    Thanks for the detailed report as I was home ill and couldn’t attend.

  • Stephen Lamphear July 15, 2009 (4:11 am)

    Great report. This is why newspapers are going out of style — people want real news, not pablum!

Sorry, comment time is over.