I’m still on Other Coast Time, so I couldn’t help but drift off after writing up the 8:15 election results, but I think I dreamt last night that I awoke to find Greg Nickels with a comfortable lead in the Seattle mayor’s race, the later ballot drops having flipped the early numbers. I guess even my unconscious had trouble believing that Mayor Nickels might not survive the primary.
Of course, there wasn’t much in the way of late ballot drops as only the handful of ballots from the county’s three accessible voting centers were added in at 10 PM, and so the mayor really has found himself at the shortest end of a three-way statistical tie in a top-two primary. The mayor’s camp tells me they have some cause for optimism, as late polling showed Nickels doing better against Mallahan than the early vote, so with another 45% or so of ballots still outstanding there’s a good chance the mayor could catch him, but as I wrote last night, they’ve gotta be feeling kinda sad.
Winning a third term is awfully tough (a truism Gov. Gregoire should take to heart as she continues to raise money, presumably in preparation for 2012), even under the best conditions, and these weren’t the best conditions for Mayor Nickels, who despite managing our city into arguably one of the more stable financial situations of any major city, county or state government during this nearly unprecedented economic downturn, has faced brutal attacks on his management skills from a press that apparently believes that his response to a nearly unprecedented snow storm is a better measure of his managerial abilities.
Voters tire of you. And citizens have reason to be fatigued, considering the miserable city response to last December’s snowstorms.
[…] The anti-tunnel vote got a huge bump with support for McGinn, who wants to undo that decision. Welcome to Groundhog Day, as the city revisits the decision again and again. McGinn’s solution, surface transit, will jam our streets and overwhelm the freeway.
Yeah, well, I oppose the tunnel myself (at least, this tunnel, under this financing deal), but perhaps the Times might have thought about the potential consequences before nailing the mayor to the cross over a trumped up Frozen Watergate scandal. (I always find it a little irritating how the press plays such an active role in influencing elections, and then sits back and pretends to be a neutral observer after the fact. At least I’m honest about my activism.)
So as it stands now, we face the very real prospect of the man with the reputation for being one of the greenest mayors in America being unceremoniously shoved aside by an environmental activist. Really?
Don’t get me wrong, Mike McGinn and his supporters deserve a helluva lot of credit for running a grassroots campaign, and impressively so, whatever the final results. I’m eating a breakfast of not so tasty crow this morning for questioning the value of phone banking. And I certainly have my differences with the Nickels administration.
But it’s just hard to believe that a scandal-free mayor of a relatively well-managed city with few if any major problems compared to, say, the big city of my birth from where I’m typing my morning after observations, might potentially fail to make it through such an unimpressive, if crowded field of primary challengers.
How very Seattle of us.