Sequim residents express concern after mayor appears to support QAnon
Sequim’s mayor is under fire for appearing to publicly support QAnon, and residents of the town are both outraged and concerned.
The controversial group is known for promoting baseless claims. The FBI has called QAnon a domestic terrorism threat, and the Department of Homeland Security issued a national terrorism bulletin about the potential for violence by extremists emboldened by the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol.
Mayor William Armacost of Sequim, Wash., has a monthly radio segment called “Coffee with the Mayor.” He shocked listeners last August when he said: “QAnon is a truth movement” that “encourages you to think for yourself.”
In last week’s show, multiple people called in to question his support for the movement.
“It’s just unfortunate because this is an incredible community, and this is just not indicative at all of who we are or who Sequim is,” Shenna Younger, a concerned resident, told KIRO Radio.
Armacost said he “never publicly stated” that he supports QAnon, and added that he should have kept his “personal feelings” to himself.
Last week, the city held a rally to support the city manager, Charlie Bush, who was asked to resign after publicly criticizing the mayor.
“So instead of having a protest against the mayor, we had a rally for Charlie. We can do this in a really positive, good way, and get people that believe in good government on the city council, and take our city back,” Younger said. “That’s the goal.”
Younger helped to form the Sequim Good Governance League earlier in January to ensure the people maintain control of the city.
“A lot of people want us to recall our mayor, but we actually had some attorneys look into that, and in Washington state it’s only about a 2-5% success rate in recall petitions,” she added. “And it would require taxpayer dollars to fund his defense.”
Meanwhile, the mayor’s comments have been drawing a lot of attention to the small town.
“There’s way too many amazing things happening here and really good people that that’s what should be the highlight, not this guy that believes in some whackadoodle conspiracy theory,” Younger said.
KIRO Radio’s Gee and Ursula Show spoke with Karen Hogan on Monday, who is also a member of the Sequim Good Governance League.
“First of all, I want to say that the mayor and QAnon do not speak for the heart and soul of Sequim,” Hogan said.
She explained that the league was formed after three of the current city members were appointed over the last year, not elected. When they decided to force out the city manager, Hogan says that’s when the residents decided to take action.
Listen to the full interview below:
The KIRO Radio Newsdesk contributed to this report.