VIDEO: District 1 City Council candidates’ first side-by-side appearance

By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

A standing-room-only crowd filled the American Legion Post 160 hall in The Triangle Thursday night for the first forum featuring all five candidates contending for the City Council District 1 seat representing West Seattle and South Park.

Four years ago, when 7 of the 9 councilmembers were elected by district for the first time, Lisa Herbold won the seat by 39 votes. Thursday night she shared the stage with four challengers: Jesse Greene, Brendan Kolding, Phil Tavel (who also ran in 2015, finishing third in the primary), and Isaiah Willoughby.

They answered questions for an hour and 20 minutes, frequently punctuated by applause, in the first of a series of forums planned by the advocacy group Speak Out Seattle. Instead of the originally announced moderator, radio host Mike Lewis asked the questions, some submitted in writing by attendees. Here’s our video:

If you don’t have time to watch, our toplines are ahead:

The sponsoring group says it’s focused on public safety, homelessness, and drug abuse. The latter issue brought one of the sharpest contrasts of the night, when the candidates were asked if they support “safe injection sites.” The four challengers denounced the concept, while the incumbent said she supported them, after first calling attention to a recently circulated hoax flyer claiming one is planned in West Seattle (it’s not) and then citing statistics showing they saved lives and money. Kolding, meantime, declared that there’s “no such thing as a ‘safe injection site’ because there’s no way to safely inject heroin.”

There was disagreement on addressing homelessness, especially in a question of what the council has gotten right. Greene – who tells of having experienced homelessness in his youth – said it’s “oversimplification – there are so many reasons” for it. Herbold said, “The answer to homelessness is always housing,” and cited the Housing First model – getting people into housing and then tackling their other problems – as important. Tavel disagreed that a lack of affordable housing was a major cause, and called for a wider “safety net,” criticizing the council for a “lack of urgency.” Kolding spoke of the housing solution he had mentioned in our interview last month, centered on large tents and a “triage process,” while saying tents and tiny houses are “undignified,” and calling for laws to be enforced. Willoughby said he is opposed to “handouts and entitled behavior.”

The candidates were asked about some things that made headlines recently, including former mayoral public-safety adviser Scott Lindsay‘s “System Failure” report on repeat offenders, and the recent KOMO TV special “Seattle Is Dying.” Regarding the latter, Greene said he was heartbroken, Herbold described a “visceral reaction,” Kolding said he felt “sorrow” as well as “validation” (for his decision to run), while Tavel called it “tragic” and said the show might better have been titled “Seattle Is Failing”; Willoughby summarized it as a “misrepresentation of Seattle money.”

How would each make her/himself, “and City Hall,” more accessible? Tavel promised weekly office hours in the district and increased technology use. Willoughby said he would create an app. Greene suggested a weekly “conference call” and then decried a Seattle Channel clip that’s been making the rounds showing a commenter asking councilmembers to pay more attention as he spoke. Herbold subsequently offered a precise time in that video when she is seen being attentive, and then went on to mention her ongoing monthly district office hours and her initiatives for accessibility such as closed-captioning on council broadcasts. Kolding mentioned social-media and constituent collaboration.

Audience questions, read by Lewis, started with one about housing density – Willoughby voiced support for HALA, Herbold, Kolding, and Tavel talked about it while noting its shortcomings, and Greene decried permit-processing time and gentrification.

Asked about last year’s “head tax” (Employee Hours Tax) uproar, Herbold defended her initial support of it, while the other four all voiced opposition to it.

Getting hyperlocal, Lewis read a question asking the candidates their top priority for District 1. After an initial mention of homelessness, Kolding cited emergency preparedness. Tavel said “getting the Purple Line back on the table” for Sound Transit light-rail was most urgent for him. Herbold agreed that light rail is at the top of her list and noted that in her role on the project’s Elected Leadership Group, she wanted to keep the “purple line” in play. For Willoughby, “removing RVs” was issue #1. Greene said emphatically that homelessness mattered most.

Questions often sidetracked into beefy discussions about bigger issues. A question about property crime brought answers veering into police staffing and police priorities (Kolding, who left SPD recently, suggested officers are overburdened with paperwork). Police staffing came up again a little while later, and Kolding said “part of the solution is to put a cop on the council.” (He would not be the first; Tim Burgess, who ended a decade on the council a little over a year ago, is a former SPD officer; former interim SPD chief Jim Pugel is a candidate in another council district.) One about helping small businesses stay in The Junction brought responses including Greene saying “I’m not a ‘not in my backyard’ person” while Herbold spoke of the Legacy Business project she’s been championing on the council, Kolding suggested a “community meeting” to seek opinions on The Junction’s future, Tavel extolled growth without losing “character,” and Willoughby suggested zoning could protect the district “from outside corporations.”

Then there was the tax issue – asked if they support a local or state income tax, Willoughby and Kolding said no; Greene contended it wasn’t an appropriate question because it would violate the state constitution; Herbold said that ruling was from a century ago and worth revisiting due to the extreme inequity of current tax policy; Tavel said tax policy is worth discussing once the current court case is resolved.

The forum only got ugly at one point, when Lewis asked a “lightning question” about rating the council’s performance in the past 2 years, and Herbold was jeered as she prefaced her answer (B-) with a defense of the council’s role as legislators, not implementers. (Others’ grades – Tavel, D-; Willoughby, C; Greene, F; Kolding was skipped over.)

WHAT’S NEXT: The next D-1 forum we know of has been announced for the 34th District Democrats‘ meeting, 7 pm April 10th, The Hall at Fauntleroy. (If you’re planning a forum, please let us know so we can get yours on the calendar too!) The primary field won’t be final until the official filing period in May; Election Day, to narrow the field to two, is August 6th.

69 Replies to "VIDEO: District 1 City Council candidates' first side-by-side appearance"

  • wssz March 22, 2019 (4:26 am)

    By the time the forum started, the large room we all were packed in ended up completely filled. Many people spilling out into the adjacent entry room.  It was great to see so many WS residents so engaged. I attended and was really impressed by the thoughtful responses by Phil Tavel, Jesse Greene, and Lisa Herbold, especially around homelessness, addiction, and repeat offenders. Brendan Kolding also made some good points but I’m concerned about his desire to overturn Initiative 940 (re police training and criminal liability in cases of deadly force), which we voters passed by 59.6% last November. Was hoping that Isaiah Willoughby would add more to the conversation. In response to almost all of the questions, he kept repeating that he’s born and raised in Seattle. That wasn’t enough, by far. I didn’t hear him demonstrate even a basic knowledge of the issues, unfortunately. Hopefully he will use this experience to become more involved in issues he cares about,  and then when he’s older, maybe runs again after he understands the complexities and challenges facing this city as a whole, and has real solutions that have a track record of success. 

  • Curtis March 22, 2019 (7:01 am)

    Thanks to WSBlog for posting full video!  And thanks to the West Seattle American Legion for hosting this special event.The moderator’s questions were smart quick and on point.  I would just say that from my perspective any one of the challengers would be an inprovement over Lisa Herbold.  But I am going with Brendan Kolding.  I think the police need to be allowed to do their jobs.  Let’s clean up the trash and make Seattle green again.  

  • Sandy Adams March 22, 2019 (7:48 am)

    It was a very good, well run forum.  I’m glad it was well attended!

  • West Seattle Voter March 22, 2019 (8:37 am)

    Herbold showed once again that she is tone deaf and not in sync with her constituents. I was there, and the crowd was dismayed and shocked at her support for a public injection sites and yet her refusal to have them in West Seattle. How very NIMBY of you Councilmember Herbold.The experiment is over Lisa, it failed. This City Council and it’s policies have had time and they have proven not to work. We don’t have anymore time for you to throw money at the Public Safety/Drug/Homelessness issue. It’s time to move along and let someone with new ideas and policies work in it. Vote Herbold out!

  • Sunnydays March 22, 2019 (9:02 am)

    My thoughts on attending this session.  Lisa Herbold, if she didn’t know before, should know now that her days are numbered. Jesse Greene appears to be more of the same that already existed on this city council, and if he shaved and wore a ginger wig I think we won’t tell the difference and we would only be getting more of the same as Herbold policies and decision making.  Isaiah Willoughby makes it clear that he is a resident of West Seattle – unfortunately, that is all he made clear.  The real candidates here are Brendan Kolding and Phil Tavel.  I would favor Brendan Kolding as we sorely need to have representation on the city council that will stop the madness, enforce the laws, and actually enact humane actions to get the criminals off the streets and in treatment. 
    One last note, see how many times some of these candidates needed to
    have the question repeated – do they suffer from attention deficits that bad
    that they can’t remember a question?

    • PatsFan March 24, 2019 (11:05 am)

      “Repeat the question” = “I wasn’t paying attention”.  Fairly common technique in politics and conference calls.

  • Joe March 22, 2019 (9:05 am)

    Why no link for Kolding’s page above?

    • WSB March 22, 2019 (9:24 am)

      Thanks, oversight while slamming at 2 am, thought I had everyone, there now.

  • West Seattle Hipster March 22, 2019 (9:14 am)

    When considering voting for any of the incumbents on the council, please watch this video and realize this is how they treat some of their constituents:

    • Sunnydays March 22, 2019 (12:57 pm)

      Please don’t criticize Rob Johnson – he was just busy negotiating his compensation benefits with NHL Seattle. Guess he’s done with that as he announced just yesterday that he’s resigning from the City Council in early April.

    • zark00 March 22, 2019 (1:07 pm)

      I watched that a few times, it really makes me quite angry.  I did notice Herbold was paying attention from the start, so good on her I guess.  But NONE of the others we paying any attention at all.  I just watched it again, it really pisses me off!!  I sent email to Debbie, Kashie, and Robby – Rob literally didn’t look up the entire time.The video already has over 350,000 views, i really hope this breaks,, kshama.sawant@seattle.govI thought those three were the worst, but all of them deserve some ire.

    • CMT March 22, 2019 (3:14 pm)

      Appalling and sadly familiar.  I have been at more than one public comment session with Lorena Gonzales on her phone the majority of the time, not even attempting to appear interested in the comments by people to whom the issues really matter.  

  • D Del Rio March 22, 2019 (9:41 am)

    If definitely looks like Lisa’s days are numbered. One can hope. I voted for her, but I will not vote for her again. Looks like there if finally a change in the air. All you voters who never vote, please vote in the November election. The majority do not, and when we don’t, we get what the minority of voters vote for.  

    • KM March 22, 2019 (10:46 am)

      You get what the majority of voters vote for, not the minority. Unless you are suggesting something nefarious with our elections?

    • Hiker March 22, 2019 (10:50 am)

      Bears repeating:   “……please vote in the November election.   The majority do not, and when we don’t, we get what the minority of voters vote for.”People who support Sawant et al are extremely energetic.    And they vote in big numbers.    That is why they are running the city at present.

    • Hiker March 22, 2019 (11:55 am)

      Sawant el al have enthusiastic supporters who vote in substantial numbers.     If you disagree with how they are running the city, gotta vote in November.

      • Kshama Will Not Be Televised March 23, 2019 (6:42 am)

        Sawant is the Wizard of Oz of Seattle politics.  Many people who voted for her are now aware that the woman is a narcissistic megalomaniac who has little interest in district issues.  The poeple who pack the Council chambers in her support are mainly people dragooned into attending by Scott Morrow (that won’t be happening any more), her motley crew of local fans, and Socialist Alternative apparatchiks flown into town.  Comments on perhaps the best barometer of her support, the Stranger, range from mocking to contempt.  And when she’s lost the Stranger…

  • BrainTrust March 22, 2019 (9:47 am)

    Former Mayor Greg Nickels gave himself and the city a ‘B’.Lisa just gave herself and the Council a ‘B-‘. Former Mayor Nickels… Former Councilmember Herbold..?

  • Nachobeaver March 22, 2019 (10:15 am)

    Vote Herbold out!!

  • Jesse Greene March 22, 2019 (10:49 am)

    Sunnydays – hahaha – Your comment about the shaved head and ginger wig was awesome and I I really almost fell out of my chair.  However, I hope I made it clear about my separation from Lisa last night.  Just a few examples were:– She said she believes in safe injection sites but only if not in our district and I said I do not support them.-She authored the “Head Tax” and I said I would have never voted for it.  – She gave the council a B- and I gave it an F. Either way, your comment was really funny but I disagree with its underlying piont.  

    • Sunnydays March 22, 2019 (12:12 pm)

      We in Seattle need diversity in the city council – the rule of the compassion brigade needs to end. 

    • dsa March 22, 2019 (2:20 pm)

      Jesse Greene as far as I am concerned you are still in the running, but as far as the Head Tax is concerned, it goes beyond not voting for it.  I would have preferred reading you say you would have vigorously argued against it ever coming up for a vote.

  • zark00 March 22, 2019 (10:58 am)

    Kolding sounds good on paper, but has nothing new to bring to the table.  I’m sure he’d be fine, but just more of the same.  Lots of promises, no realistic plans to make them happen.  The anti I940 is troubling too – a former cop should be all in for training for police.  I know less about Tavel, but you could just about change the name at the top of the page and all of their campaign sites would be identical.  Lots of grand plans without a whiff of how to pull them off.  Seattle does not have hundreds of millions of dollars in funds that are just being inefficiently spent.  It’s a good talking point, but is unfortunately not true. Wish it were.

  • WestSideVoter March 22, 2019 (10:58 am)

    Stop Catch and Release. Mandated in house drug programs and if they leave they goto jail (and arrest warrant).  Multiple offenders One year in Jail Minimum for leaving treatment facility.  Frequent drug testing.      No warning to clear all camps on PUBLIC PROPERTY NOW !!   TOW THE RV’s !!  Follow the laws SEATTLE council…     Bye Lisa !! You will not be getting our vote. 

  • Anonymous Coward March 22, 2019 (11:01 am)

    See, I watched the KOMO video.  I thought it a fantastic piece showing real evidence that our current city council members have been able to work together to effectively solve our city’s real, pressing problems and to make the city a better place for future generations.  I mean did you see so much as a single plastic straw or plastic grocery bag in and amongst all those piles of rubbish waiting to be washed/blown into our beloved Puget Sound?

  • shauna Levine March 22, 2019 (11:04 am)

    As one who helped to promote this event , putting up numerous leaflets(which I will do my best to take down to avoid litter) , the attendance made it a dream come true for me. I am sorry we didn’t have enough room and chairs for everyone. The turnout was fantastic but I wish everyone could have been more comfortable- and even had better access to our nice refreshment table But anyway, change is in the air and it’s so good to see people showing up, caring, and realizing we have power to decide who makes city policies.  Stay tuned. This is just the beginning and feel free to connect with SpeakOutSeattle on Facebook!

    • KM March 22, 2019 (6:20 pm)

      There are some stapled to utility poles on California between Morgan and a Alaska on the west side of the street if you are looking for more to clean up.

  • Mj March 22, 2019 (11:16 am)

    Lisa is clearly out of touch and needs to be shown the door!

  • Natalie March 22, 2019 (11:28 am)

    Lisa Herbold is so steeped in her “woke,” “progressive” ideology, that there is no way you will ever wrong it out of her. It’s a lost cause. She was one of the primary writers of the Head Tax and stuffed her little “Progressive Revenue Task Force” with her cronies from the Transit Riders Union and Puget Sound Sage. You see in this forum that she shows no remorse for her bad policies and disastrous ideology! Tavel and Kolding seem like good contenders. I appreciate Greene’s passion, but right now we need more head and less heart. 

  • WSResident March 22, 2019 (11:35 am)

    Lisa Herbold wants to pat herself on the back for being attentive to that poor man in the video taken in council chambers. Yet, she said NOTHING to acknowledge that the poor man’s feelings of being ignored by the council were justified. She does not STAND UP for you unless you support her ideas or her campaign.  I’ve seen her on video in council chambers or at outreach events  plenty of times ignoring people and chatting it up with her bestie Lorena González. Just watch that video from last spring in SoDO where they were supposed to be listening to the concerns of business owners. Vote. Her. Out!

  • Steve Murch March 22, 2019 (11:35 am)

    Thanks for this coverage of the first Candidate Forum!Just a note from us at SPEAK OUT Seattle that Candidate Forums are planned for every District, and viewers can tune into our YouTube channel to catch them: own version of the full video is also at that link above. Thanks.

  • Peter March 22, 2019 (11:39 am)

    That was uninspiring. They all need to develop more concrete and nuanced positions on more issues. Right now they might as well all be clones of each other.

  • Hiker March 22, 2019 (11:51 am)

    To echo a prior post, we need to vote.    If most people do not, then the what, 35-40% who do vote, end up running the city.Sawant et al have enthusiastic supporters who do vote.     They will continue to run the city absent a large turnout.     Unless of course, they do constitute a majority.    I hope not, but let’s all vote and see what happens.

  • BS March 22, 2019 (12:08 pm)

    Which one will make cleaning up the city 1st priority 

  • Steve Murch March 22, 2019 (12:08 pm)

    Link was broken above — the YouTube channel is

  • Elisabeth March 22, 2019 (1:31 pm)

    This is Elisabeth James with Speak Out Seattle which hosted this as an all-volunteer event. Thanks to American Legion Hall for donating space. We may jointly hold a debate later in the election season, but for now we want voters to get to know the candidates. These candidates are not all the same, so please watch the full video. We also wish to thank the candidates who not only care about Seattle, but are spending time, money and energy to run for office. The political climate can be toxic so this is a brave act indeed. We also thank them for showing up last night to let D1 know who they are. Please stay engaged, follow and meet with the candidates you like.  This is your opportunity to let them know your concerns and influence policy.  Also, join SOS on Facebook to engage in a civil, respectful dialogue about the issues. Or send us an email at if you are interested in volunteering opportunities.

  • Melissa Westbrook March 22, 2019 (1:31 pm)

    I’d have to listen to the tape of the event.  Kolding would probably be a Burgess, Jr. and that’s not a good thing.  However, he does have one thing correct – the City should be triaging for homeless.  That we have homeless children in our schools – last count nearly 2800 – is terrible. Those families are the ones who are probably the latest in to be homeless and could be the first out, if given help.  (I tutor in a Title One school and these children have a lot of trauma, movement and uncertainty in their lives.)I wish public education would have had some play as there are several moves within the City to support charter schools (which Seattle voted down by a wide margin):- zoning departure in the South end that did NOT follow city zoning regs- head of City Pre-K?  She used to run a couple of charter schools in Arizona- During the last election cycle for the Families, Education, Preschool and Promise levy, City Council and Mayor repeatedly refused to answer the question about whether charter schools could access K-12 levy dollars.  They said they were “waiting” for an opinion from the City Attorney. AFTER  the levy passed, they said they would share dollars with charter schools (but they are not legally obliged to do so).  The City Attorney has no written opinion available.  West Seattle, you already have a couple of charter schools and you may get more.  That is taking dollars from your traditional public schools.  It may be worth asking candidates about this.As well, the HALA report repeatedly called schools “amenities” like a Starbucks.  Schools are community hubs.  Without developer impact fees, schools and other entities will have absorb the costs of changes in housing patterns.Lastly, fyi, two of the assistant principals at West Seattle HS are working on an application for a charter schools.  They used some district resources to work on their application.  (Yes, I’ve told the board and the district).  Pretty unseemly.

  • Plf March 22, 2019 (1:39 pm)

    Has another forum been scheduled and perhaps in a larger venue?

    • WSB March 22, 2019 (2:02 pm)

      At the end of the story. The Hall certainly has more capacity.

  • A March 22, 2019 (2:27 pm)

    I’m a friend Jesse Greene and he is genuinely a good person and cares deeply about our community. Right now it’s a toss up for me between him and Brendan Kolding. Whichever one of the two of them that will help clean up our streets and stop this madness where we are catering to the massive amount of criminals and junkies that are here will get my vote. Stop the madness vote Lisa out!! Let’s reclaim our city and stop the socialist policies that are destroying it. Let the police enforce the laws and put no overnight parking signs in the trouble spots where the rvs congregate.  That will be a good start to ending this problem

    • BS March 22, 2019 (3:32 pm)


  • The truth March 22, 2019 (3:13 pm)

    I thought Phil was on point with every answer.  Kolding has some strong points in policing but I need to see a lot more from him on other policies. Greene seams like a sweet guy but I just don’t get the command of the issues that I would like to see. 

  • Patrick March 22, 2019 (3:20 pm)

     So Lisa,  based upon the comments, do you see the writing on the wall!  Governing only by far left ideology, and kowtowing to special interest groups that make up only a small percentage of the voting public, have your constituents  showing you the door towards the end of the year.   Hopefully anyone running gets this very clear message.  We are fed up with the last several years of Seattle City government and their clear interest in only representing those that feed them the money. Everyone, please remember what others have said above, get out and vote whether you are anywhere near moderate liberal and/or conservatives.  It will be the only way to take our city back and breath life back into a ‘dying(see komo news) metropolis. 

  • wssz March 22, 2019 (4:35 pm)

    A: I’m not sure it’s good to suggest that Jesse Greene and Brendan Kolding  are even remotely similar. There’s a world of difference between them, and at this very early point in the campaign, my preliminary sense is that one has a deal breaker (for me) as a motivating reason to run, and the other one doesn’t.  I do not want to see I-940 overturned. I don’t believe Jesse does either. 

    • A March 23, 2019 (12:18 am)

      Thanks for your reply but I did not say that Jesse and Brendan were the same. I have a major issue with our city not taking care of it’s tax paying, working citizens and catering to those that are not contributing anything positive. Jesse is my friend but he will not be getting my vote if I do not feel that he will put an end to this current madness that our current city council is allowing. Jesse or Brendan will be a major upgrade over Lisa and her socialist policies

  • Pete March 22, 2019 (4:48 pm)

    Please make a note that the primary vote is in August to barrow the field to the top two vote getters. I mention this because I noticed in several earlier comments voting in November was mentioned. Also, make sure you are properly registered and if you feel this strongly about our community reach out to your neighbors and friends and get involved. If you are interested in a specific candidate reach out to them. They want to talk to the constituents in West Seattle and South Park. If you truly want change in the way our city is run get involved. You cannot expect to influence change but making comments on blogs and then expecting others to do the heavy lifting. Get involved and make a change  .

    • WSB March 22, 2019 (4:57 pm)

      Thanks, Pete. That’s also been at the “what’s next” end of the story since we published it early today … Tuesday, August 6th, to be specific, though as usual ballots will arrive a few weeks in advance, so voting will start in mid-July. – TR

  • Ernest J Rosengren March 22, 2019 (6:58 pm)

    So glad to hear that the forum was a rousing success.  Hoping that there will e another in May.  We are in Arizona for the winter, but would have liked to have been there, but will watch the video.  Vote Lisa off the ballot in August!

  • Bradley March 22, 2019 (10:44 pm)

    Herbold is an embarrassment and disaster for our West Seattle. I can’t wait to vote for someone else.

    • Jort March 23, 2019 (12:46 am)

      A disaster?!?!?! Oh my god, what’s happened to West Seattle in the last two years?! Has it turned into an ash-heap of destruction and chaos?!?!?!?!?! 

  • Marie March 23, 2019 (12:26 am)

    I feel bad for the guy in the video, and I agree that the council was rude, but he should have moved on and stated his case rather than spending time complaining about not having enough time.  And I didn’t watch the KOMO report. It may have raised some good points, but, oh, the melodramatic title?! Plus, KOMO is owned by Sinclair Broadcast. Want to know about Sinclair? See the way, I’m so proud of myself! Yesterday I spent two hours in scary, dangerous downtown Seattle and I am here to tell you I survived, unscathed! Moreover, I actually had fun!

    • Bob dewey March 23, 2019 (5:11 am)

      If you want actual facts and video to back up the facts about what is happening in Seattle, then watch the Komo video. The video also interviews people living on the streets and clearly shows that the city leadership is failing. I’m sure you can go into any of the local stores in West Seattle and ask them if they have a shoplifting problem and how confident they feel that something will be done to stop it. Seattle has more property crime in 2018 than New York and LA, the only city that has more is San Francisco……

    • WSResident March 23, 2019 (7:10 am)

      You know, rambling on about who owns KOMO is just a pathetic way of ignoring the REAL issues. Seattle needs voters and elected officials with backbones who are not afraid to engage the issues, regardless of who the messenger is. And people who excuse bad behavior from elected officials are not good citizens. So much cowardice abounds in this city.

    • Jort March 23, 2019 (8:58 am)

      Melodramatic is a very kind word to describe this report’s title, given that Seattle is home to some of the nation’s largest concentrations of wealth. A regular Detroit, we are, right? Maybe Seattle isn’t actually “DYING,” but I know that homeless people are just so, so icky to look at and maybe that makes people feel like they’re literally dying. I dunno.     Conservatives have found an inroad into Seattle politics with this homeless rabble-rousing. They don’t actually care about it, they just want to find a way to make the city more conservative, and fear-mongering over the homeless may well be the most effective way to do that. 

  • Jort March 23, 2019 (12:48 am)

    What is this “far left ideology” that people in these comments are talking about? Honestly, is Fox News hosting candidate forums in Seattle now? This is some real garbage.

    • CAM March 23, 2019 (10:02 am)

      People attended a candidate forum hosted by a partisan organization with a definite axe to grind and walked out agreeing with the viewpoint of that organization. That isn’t really surprising. It’s also unsurprising that anyone who doesn’t agree with that organization was unlikely to attend that forum. So the fact that someone was booed during the forum shouldn’t really be used as a good gauge of public sentiment. I’d love to see some forums held by nonpartisan groups who bend over backwards to be fair, including in their selection of the moderator, questions, etc. The League of Women Voters does this in other states but I’ve yet to see anything similar in Seattle. Everything is always hosted by someone with a well advertised bias. 

      • WSB March 23, 2019 (4:21 pm)

        We had an early forum in 2015. Proved to be a mistake, at least that year, as several candidates (including the eventual primary winners Herbold and Braddock) didn’t even join the race until afterward. So far this year, we know there’ll be at least three more – the 34th District Democrats on April 10th (although their rules have at least in the past limited participation to candidates who verify they are Democrats, even in nonpartisan races, so I’ll be interested to see if all five are at that one), the West Seattle Chamber of Commerce on a TBA date, and we are tentatively partnering with the Junction Association to present an end-of-primary-campaign forum at Summer Fest in July, right before the ballots drop. The district councils, which are rather neutral groups, have been talking about one or two forums too. Have yet to hear from anyone else – but hey, the primary is still 4+ months away. – TR

        • CAM March 23, 2019 (7:02 pm)

          The one in 2015 was likely just before I moved to WS. I’m glad to hear it happened. I’ll keep an eye out for details of others. I appreciate that the Chamber of Commerce and Junction Association are not aligned with either party for the most part but they do have their own agenda to push (as they should in order to advocate for themselves) so it’s hard for me to see them as nonpartisan. 

        • Jethro Marx March 23, 2019 (9:07 pm)

          Yes, host a forum; do it at dusk in the street, hopefully adjacent to the beer garden! I probably still won’t vote, because all the commenters told me Seattle is dead and the candidates are crappy carbon copies, but I do love following the machinations. I skimmed that KOMO video, because, damn, TLDW; anyone who can say with a straight face that’s it’s an unbiased look at Seattle’s problems sucks at thinking. Regardless of who owns the channel (which is, indeed, fn relevant, WSresident!) anyone who tries to deliver an unbiased look at anything under a Michael Myers-esque soundtrack ought to be required to also broadcast a disclaimer pointing out that they are, after all, a bit of a dumbass. And that said, I dig the small part of the piece that was devoted to treatment of opioid addiction; that is indeed, key, and it is going to cost money. I hope the “lock-them-up-on-an-island” crowd is ready to foot the bill, because fully funding existing clinics that provide methadone, etc would be expensive, but not nearly as much as trusting such care to the government. But, yes, in general, we’re not doing nearly enough, not nearly enough. But only some among us are dying.

          • WSB March 23, 2019 (10:34 pm)

            I kinda like the “in the street/adjacent to the beer garden” idea. Maybe an all-lightning-round 20-minute forum as opening act for the Saturday night headliner.

          • Jort March 24, 2019 (8:43 am)

            Jethro, this is an excellent, excellent comment.  Thank you. It’s probably important to remember that this homelessness freak-out has its roots less in genuine concern for the homeless and much more so in a hatred of “liberal” Seattle. Conservatives want to make homelessness a wedge issue in this election; they feel it’s their best shot. But the roots of this are in conservatism. To see Lisa Herbold, a die-hard middling centrist and career city politics enthusiast, portrayed as an “out of touch” “far left” “wild-eyed liberal” candidate is just plain stupid. Lisa is, much like our mayor, an extremely boring and risk-averse politician who isn’t doing nearly enough to reflect the actual views of our actually liberal city. I am no fan of Lisa, mostly because she hasn’t forcibly taken away every citizen’s car yet, but by god I will vote for her in a heartbeat against any joke candidate that’s seeking support from “speak up for safe space Seattle” or whatever garbage is up on the Facebook groups this month. 

  • Mj March 23, 2019 (9:52 am)

    Jort the enabling of illegal activities that the current far left council has allowed to happen in the City.  You do not see illegal camping in the east side City’s and the crime rates are significantly lower on the east side!

  • Andy March 23, 2019 (9:54 am)

    Good Bye Lisa

  • Karen March 23, 2019 (10:35 pm)

    I voted for Herbold before and by and large I am satisfied and will vote for her again.  Good for her for supporting safe injection sites!

  • Katt March 24, 2019 (9:23 am)

    For all of you who consider yourself “woke”  – –  wake up to the insanity. We deserve change and we deserve  to change fast. We deserve  enforcement and empathy. Laissez faire and throwing taxpayer money in a backwards fashion does not work for the severely mentally ill and the drug addicted. Lisa’s housing first for these homeless populations are insane on the face of it.  Wake up people. I want to smell the cherry blossoms and not the urine.  As a lifelong Democrat, we need change. Vote Brendan Kolding.

    • Jethro Marx March 24, 2019 (1:30 pm)

      I do agree that money is thrown around in a haphazard fashion, but that is the nature of government. As to housing first, it flat out works, by any metric except anecdotal facebook shares by armchair policy wonks. Long-term rates of housing, engagement with mental health and addiction treatment, reduced contact with emergency room care and criminal courts- the results are easy to find. If Seattle threw their weight behind it, we’d see public housing being built all over the place. I don’t see that, do you? You’ll say, but homeless people refuse shelter when they’re offered it! Sure, because they’d rather sleep in a tent than a shelter that makes them leave their pets or family or possessions at the door and carries a certainty of contact with bedbugs and a rather high likelihood of being assaulted or robbed. Oh, and then often boots them out during daylight hours. That’s not a complete picture of the complexities, but it’s accurate in its essence. Not a secret, and information that those interviewed for the KOMO piece surely offered, but, you know, when you’re making a case that homeless people are the worst, one must edit some things out. I don’t really know what you mean by “woke” because I’ve never heard anyone describe themselves thus; is it the kind of thing you call those you disagree with? Are you advocating the opposite of wokeness? Are those the only two options? Is it possible that almost no social ill can be distilled down to a snappy 10-word answer?

    • Jort March 25, 2019 (5:34 pm)

      Just a small correction: cherry blossoms don’t really have a scent, so you’ll have to find something else to supplant the billions of gallons of insane urine smells that are insanely flooding insane Seattle. Insane!!

  • Villagegreen March 24, 2019 (12:37 pm)

    Nice to read some rational responses from CAM and Jethro Marx. Thanks. 

  • delridge72 March 25, 2019 (8:39 am)

    Thank you, WSB for your write up! I myself attended this public forum, and I appreciated the thoughtful answers that all of the candidates provided. Also,  I would encourage anyone who wants to get more involved in promoting better public health and safety outcomes here in our city to join Speak Out Seattle. Our democracy is only as strong as how much we make sure our voices are heard.

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