Who firefighters and police favor for Seattle City Council

Aug 14, 2019, 5:17 AM | Updated: 2:00 pm
The Seattle Fire Department. (Seattle City Council, Flickr)...
The Seattle Fire Department. (Seattle City Council, Flickr)
(Seattle City Council, Flickr)

We have entered the final stretch in the race for Seattle City Council. The primaries are over and two top candidates have emerged in each District. Now, Seattle firefighters and cops are speaking out about who they favor for the November 5 election.

Only one incumbent received a thumbs up from the Seattle Fire Fighters Union IAFF Local 27 — Councilmember Debora Juarez in District 5. The firefighters are encouraging residents to vote for up-and-comers in the other districts.

Except for District 1 and District 7, however, where they have made no endorsements. Councilmember Lisa Herbold is facing Phil Tavel in District 1. In District 7, former Seattle police chief Jim Pugel faces Andrew Lewis.

Primary election night winners

Seattle firefighters have endorsed the following candidates:

  • District 2: Mark Solomon (23 percent in the primary; facing Tammy Morales)
  • District 3: Egan Orion (22 percent in the primary; facing Kshama Sawant)
  • District 4: Alex Pedersen (40 percent in the primary; facing Shaun Scott)
  • District 5: Debora Juarez (45 percent in the primary; facing Ann Davison Sattler)
  • District 6: Heidi Wills (21 percent in the primary; facing Dan Strauss)

President of IAFF Local 27 Kenny Stuart issued the following statement along with the endorsements:

Day and night Seattle Fire Fighters are responding to calls for help. We are on the frontlines of every major issue affecting Seattle residents, including homelessness, the affordable housing crisis, opiate and alcohol addiction, mental health, and crime – in addition to the many fires, car and bike accidents, and rescue operations that we regularly perform. Over the last several years Seattle’s population has exploded, but we are doing all of this with basically the same staffing levels and resources today that we had 40 years ago. Seattle must do better. We need to elect City Council Members that will make public safety and fire fighters a top priority and come up with common sense solutions to the many problems facing our community. Seattle Fire Fighters believe that these five candidates are the right leaders for public safety and the City of Seattle.

See the primary election results for key races in Western Washington here.

Police and Seattle City Council

Seattle police haven’t been as vocal on the issue, but some have hinted at how they encourage others to vote for Seattle City Council candidates.

The Seattle Police Officer’s Guild is the police officer’s union. SPOG Vice President Mike Solan recently told KIRO Radio that some council members have contributed to an anti-cop rhetoric in Seattle. It’s those council members who they encourage residents to vote out.

“I pray that the silent majority stands up this coming election and actually has a say …” Solan said. “We implore the citizens of this city to support their officers and vote — please vote the officials out of office who play into this.”

“We see the city council — a certain individual calling us murderers — spreading lies and deceit and, frankly, unbelievable negativity towards our membership,” he continued. “That leads to a recruitment and retention crisis, where officers now feel that they cannot do their jobs appropriately.”

Of course, only three council members are running to maintain their position on the dais — Lisa Herbold, Debora Juarez, and Kshama Sawant. All three came out of the primary with the most votes in their district. Herbold received 51 percent; Juarez received 45 percent; and Sawant got 37 percent.

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Who firefighters and police favor for Seattle City Council