JASON RANTZ

Rantz: Watch Seattle voter scold Councilmember Kshama Sawant in grocery store

Jan 25, 2021, 8:33 PM | Updated: Jan 26, 2021, 10:56 am
kshama sawant...
Seattle City Councilmember Kshama Sawant scolded as she was shopping for groceries.

Seattle’s socialist firebrand Kshama Sawant was confronted by a Seattle voter as she shopped for groceries in her district. She’s currently facing a recall from constituents who decry the councilmember for spending more time on division than unity.

The move comes as Sawant and Seattle City Council colleagues have defended radical activists engaged in similar, and considerably more direct and threatening activism.

The Seattle City Councilmember was in the produce section at a PCC when a man approached her. He scolded her for her policies that the voter argued hurt Seattle.

Not everyone supports you, Sawant

The man approaches Sawant with a friendly disposition, greeting her by saying, “Hey Sawant, how’s it going?” Sawant, in kind, responded kindly, asking how he’s doing.

While the man’s tone doesn’t change, his message did.

“I just want to let you know that not everybody in District 3 supports your reckless policies,” the man tells her. “You chase people out of their houses with your crime rates because of the poverty that you encourage. So, are you comfortable? Are you happy with the job you’re doing? Because a lot of us aren’t.”

An uncomfortable Sawant then retreats and the man walks away.

She appeared unhappy. This was a marked difference from her attitude after marching a rowdy group of activists to Mayor Jenny Durkan’s home for a rally. Durkan’s address is protected due to threats she faced as a former prosecutor. Sawant didn’t care about those concerns. She was interested in making cheap political points.

Rantz: Stunning hypocrisy from Kshama Sawant after promoting ‘rebellion’

Why did the man confront Sawant?

I had the opportunity to discuss the issue with the man in the video.

I agreed to keep his identity private after he expressed concern for his safety. The very activists who angrily confront lawmakers and others seem likely to get upset with this man for engaging in significantly less egregious conduct. Sawant’s cult-like followers can be vindictive.

“My only objective was to let her know, not everyone in Seattle supports her radical agenda,” he told the Jason Rantz Show on KTTH in an email.

He was shocked to see Sawant in the PCC. It reeked of hypocrisy to him.

“Sawant has been so critical of gentrification, like developers are the devil, but she has no problem shopping at [PCC] in the newly developed building,” he explained. “I am also from Seattle. There used to be more shooting[s] in that intersection. Now the area has improved with all of the developments.”

In 2018, the space was supposed to be occupied by a New Seasons Market, but she used her council position to pressure them to jettison their plans. She called them anti-union. And she demanded “a grocery store that will offer affordable food to our community members.”

Instead, she got PCC, an expensive grocery store where a pound of chanterelle mushrooms will set you back $13. And she’ll happily shop there.

Sawant is a fan of the tactic — though usually if it’s aggressive

I’m not a fan of this kind of tactic, which I told the man.

He was polite, but direct, and certainly not threatening. Still, unlike Democrats, I prefer you don’t confront politicians you disagree with politically unless the time and place invites political discussions or you ask the politician if they’re open to a dialogue. Politicians should be allowed to have personal lives, even those who pursue policies that are destroying the city.

This form of activism recently escalated in Portland. Mayor Ted Wheeler felt forced to pepper spray a man who was angrily confronting him. My fear is that it could escalate like that in Seattle.

Still, Sawant, council colleagues, and the Democratic Party embrace this tactic. Now they’ll deal with it being used against them.

Hey, they like this tactic…

Sawant helped lead a march to Durkan’s home last summer to pressure the mayor to back dangerous policies to defund the police. Sawant’s mob vandalized the property. After being criticized by the mayor, Sawant proudly defended the tactic. Then threatened to “fight with even greater unity and determination” after being called out.

Sawant’s council colleague Andrew Lewis condemned the rally at the time. But once marchers visited him at his home, he had a change of heart. He’s repeatedly defended mobs of activists who show up at night to harass politicians, even after a member of the group was accused of assaulting a resident who asked them if they could stop disrupting the neighborhood with their late-night activism. An assault against a constituent won’t get Lewis to turn on out-of-district activists he thinks will keep him on the council.

And fellow Socialist councilmember Tammy Morales defended the tactic too. After an extended visit by a mob at her home, Morales insisted she “appreciated the opportunity to listen to what they had to say.”

Listen to the Jason Rantz Show weekday afternoons from 3-6 p.m. on KTTH 770 AM (or HD Radio 97.3 FM HD-Channel 3). Subscribe to the podcast here. Follow @JasonRantz on Twitter, and Instagram and like me on Facebook

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Rantz: Watch Seattle voter scold Councilmember Kshama Sawant in grocery store