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Teresa Mosqueda to run for reelection to Seattle council, won’t pursue mayoral campaign

Seattle City Councilmember Teresa Mosqueda. (Seattle City Council)

Teresa Mosqueda announced Wednesday that she intends to run for reelection to her at-large Seattle City Council position in 2021, rather than pursue a mayoral campaign.

Speculating on potential candidates for Seattle’s 2021 mayoral race

Mosqueda had long been rumored as a potential candidate to replace outgoing Mayor Jenny Durkan, who had announced in December that she wouldn’t be pursuing a second term herself.

Even with a potentially open path to the mayor’s office, Mosqueda — who chairs the council’s budget committee — stated in a written release that there is “much more to do” in her position on the dais.

“We are building towards a stronger, more resilient, and equitable Seattle,” she said in a written release. “As we recover from the impacts of the past year, I will continue to deliver on the vision of an economy that works for all.”

Over the last year, Mosqueda’s been at the forefront of a handful of high-profile clashes with Mayor Durkan, including a landmark big business tax she sponsored, which Durkan left unsigned, as well as joining calls to rework the Seattle Police Department’s budget following protests stemming from the death of George Floyd.

Following a series of protests where SPD frequently used tear gas on Capitol Hill demonstrators, Mosqueda called on Durkan to “ask herself if she is the right leader in this moment and resign.”

Mosqueda’s decision to run for reelection could clear the way for fellow Councilmember Lorena Gonzalez to mount her own mayoral campaign.

Gonzalez was appointed council president in 2020. She had previously intended to campaign for Washington Attorney General early in 2020, back when it appeared as though Jay Inslee would be pursuing a lengthy run for president, which in turn would have seen current AG Bob Ferguson run for governor.

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Although Gonzalez scuttled her campaign after it became clear that Inslee and Ferguson would both be running for reelection to their respective positions, it pointed to larger political ambitions for the at-large councilmember first elected in 2017.

With Mosqueda bowing out of the mayoral race early, the field to replace Durkan remains clear, with candidates expected to surface in the coming weeks and months. The filing window for mayoral campaigns in Seattle will span five days between May 17 and May 21, 2021, although official announcements regarding intentions to run will likely precede that period.

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