Dori: Seattle Councilmember Rob Johnson is not telling the truth
Continuing in our series of exposing the members of the Seattle City Council as corrupt con artists — one of the reasons this whole city is in gridlock is because they constantly take away car lanes and parking spots. Seattle City Councilmember Rob Johnson’s latest brainwave is that he wants 35th Avenue Northeast on one of these “road diets.”
Johnson used to be part of this fringe wacko group, the Transportation Choices Coalition. This group just hates cars. They despise automobiles and the people who drive them. They got Rob Johnson elected, and now Rob Johnson has to do their bidding. He is the puppet to their puppet-master. And the puppet-master wants to gridlock Seattle because the more the city is gridlocked, the more they are able to force people on to trains and buses.
Now understandably, businesses along 35th Avenue are freaking out about losing parking. In a robust economy, small businesses are dying around here. And losing their vital parking spaces will only hurt them further. That is why about 70 percent of the small businesses in the project’s location on 35th Avenue have declared their opposition to the road diet in letters to the city council and Mayor Jenny Durkan.
Rob Johnson claims that he just recently found out that people don’t want this project. He is lying. We have text messages and emails (which you can view here, here, and here) from over a year ago in which Johnson’s staff told him that 68 percent of people in his district were opposed to this road diet. These documents are public record, obtained through a records request. They show that he blatantly lied when he said that he did not know there was community opposition until recently.
But, Rob Johnson had a University of Washington study that said that this would be a good thing for the neighborhood. A University of Washington study? Well that must be prestigious. The problem is, it looks like it was actually a term paper written by a student named Kyle Rowe. I read through it — there’s no engineering, no math of any official level, no traffic counts. It is a student term paper. And Johnson has been touting it as a “UW study.”
What did Kyle Rowe do after UW? He got a job with the Seattle Department of Transportation. Then he left SDOT in 2017. You know where he went after that? Well what do you know — a bikeshare company called Spin. He is the head of government partnerships at Spin. While he was at SDOT, Kyle Rowe made $81,000 a year as an associate transportation planner.
People often ask me why I don’t run for office. It is because I could not be surrounded every second of every day by a band of soulless, filthy liars. The filthier you are, the more deceitful you are, the more successful you get. I can fulfill a much more important role by having a radio show and exposing these people, because, as I’ve been saying, the pendulum has swung as far as it should possibly go. And maybe, just maybe, with the information I provide here, we can start pulling the pendulum back.