Y'all don't need me to say it: Last night was a good night to be a Democrat. Winning the governor races in both Virginia and New Jersey, things started off well. Virginia also elected a transgender member to their house of delegates, and Minneapolis to their City Council. As of now, Socialist Alternative candidate Ginger Jantzen holds a slight lead in her hotly contested (and very expensive) race in Minneapolis.
Closer to home, Manka Dhingra is poised to become the next State Senator from the 45th Legislative District, giving Democrats the majority for the first time since 2013. Michelle Rylands is down pretty big in the 31st, but with late ballots trending left, her race is likely going to tighten. Enough to win? Most likely not, but enough to ensure that this powerhouse candidate might be successful in a future race.
Labor had a good night.
Before getting into the obvious - Larry Brown, head of IAM 751, is leading handily in his bid for Auburn City Council. Labor backed Nancy Backus is on track to win re-election. In Sedro-Wooley, Karl de Jong, former King County Democrats chair and Labor Democrat, is up 2-1. In Federal Way, Labor backed Jesse Johnson is up, and De'Sean Quinn and Zack Idan are both leading in Tukwila.
Burien is showing a mixed bag. Nancy Tosta is poised to win re-election, and Krystal Marx is currently ahead. Jimmy Matta is behind Debi Wagner (one of the most anti-immigrant council members), and Pedro Olguin is further behind for the open seat. If Marx lead expands on Thursday, she's good. Matta and Oguin might be behind, but they're not out. This was a very contested race, and a lot of work was put in to the last few days to turn out the vote for the Dream Team.
The Stranger did not
It wasn't terrible for the Stranger. But their marquee race was not looking good. In 2009, the Stranger turned their support of Mike McGinn into a solid victory. It appears that they did not repeat themselves this time around.
There were some wins with Stranger backed candidates in contested races. Zachary DeWolf is up big, and so is Betty Patu. Pete Holmes is walking away with re-election (more on that later), but with the losses of Cary Moon and Jon Grant, it's safe to say last night wasn't their best night.
The Seattle Times - also not a great night
Joel Connelly at the Seattle PI likes to write about how people really should disregard endorsements of the big papers, and do their own research. It appears that's what happened this year. While Seattle Times backed candidate Jenny Durkan is poised to be the next Mayor of Seattle, the Seattle Times otherwise had a mediocre evening (and that's putting it nicely). Their candidates for School Board (aside from Eden Mack, who was everyone's candidate for school board) lost. Their "dream team" for City Council - Pat Murakami and Jon Grant - are both going home, not to the 2nd floor. Remember when they endorsed Jinyoung Englund? So do I.
People want to do something about homelessness
For the most part, candidates who took a "tough" approach to homelessness didn't too so well. Murakami lost big, and so did Scott Lindsay (who was viewed as the Law and Order guy in his race). The Veterans, Seniors, and Human Services Levy was up with 2/3 of the vote. People want to fund and do things to reduce homelessness, and they elected candidates who tend to agree.
Men running against women generally had a bad night. Mitzi Johanknecht is up, and given the news in recent days, likely to be the next King County Sheriff. Stephanie Bowman cruised to re-election. Victoria Woodards is winning in Tacoma, and in Everett, the first woman mayor ever will be sworn in next year.
In Seattle, City Council Position 8 was supposed to be a nail-biter, and Teresa Mosqueda came away with a big win. She definitely busted her ass to get that 60+%, and it paid off big-time. There are still some races that are too close to call (in Bellevue, Karol Brown is down, but I wouldn't say "out"), but overall, women had a good night in Washington State. I would venture that this also means we are poised to get more good shit done for all Washingtonians.
About the Port
One race is too close to call. In the Primary, Ryan Calkins saw a pretty significant swing, bringing the race from a 7 point deficit to incumbent John Creighton to less than 1 percent. He's now less than 2 points behind. John is an old friend of mine, but objectively speaking, there's a good chance that Ryan Calkins (also a friend - and he lives up the street!) is the next Port Commissioner.
It was an exciting night. And moving forward, we have some real opportunities to do good things - at all levels of government - with these newly elected folks.