KTTH OPINION

Rantz: Progressive candidate upset he isn’t running unopposed, makes up candidate

May 15, 2024, 5:55 PM

Photo: Progressive candidate Shaun Scott....

Progressive candidate Shaun Scott. (MyNorthwest file photo)

(MyNorthwest file photo)

Progressive candidate Shaun Scott is upset that he has to run a campaign against an opponent. He’s so upset that he effectively made up a non-existent Republican challenger. It’s all an odd display of hubris that’s even getting called out on the far left.

Scott, who is so fringe he lost a Seattle City Council race in a district that includes equally fringe college students, is running for the state legislature. He hopes to replace the retiring Frank Chopp in the 43rd Legislative District. The community activist hopes to use his name recognition amongst activists in the district to catapult him to a more influential role in an already far-left state legislature.

But the progressive activist apparently expected to run unopposed. Scott now faces three challengers.

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Why is Shaun Scott complaining in his campaign ad?

In a campaign video posted to social media, Scott complained about having to face the challengers.

“Under normal circumstances, a candidate that is running in a very progressive district with the endorsement of an outgoing 30-year incumbent and with significant in-district name recognition, and the fundraising and volunteer energy to show it, that candidate would normally be running unopposed,” he said in the video.

Scott’s message received a cold reception from some on the far left, including Ashley Nerbovig, a reporter for the Stranger.

“No one is entitled to a free seat, even if they have name recognition, institutional backing, and a progressive platform. That would actually be s****y!” Nerbovig wrote.

Criticism of Shaun Scott is spot on

Scott seems to think the seat should be his because he is a community activist who is farther to the left of Chopp. It very obviously shouldn’t be and his criticism reveals a deep insecurity of his far-left agenda. Why would he care if he’s challenged? He thinks he’s got “significant in-district name recognition and the fundraising and volunteer energy to show it.” So why feel threatened from his perspective?

Thankfully, his ideology is not as accepted as it once was and he should feel vulnerable. Seattle voters recently rejected extremist policies, understanding, for example, that the police defund movement and soft-on-crime policies created a crisis. Scott supports both defunding and soft-on-crime policies.

It’s abnormal to see an open seat in a large legislative district with just one candidate running unopposed. Even some of the most popular or secure incumbents get challengers. Indeed, Chopp has faced challengers.

The notion that he should run unopposed is part of a disturbing trend from younger left-wing activists. That they’re somehow entitled to get their way purely because they think they’re on the right side of issues is laughable, especially since their side is almost always to blame for chaos.

Shaun Scott makes up a challenger

The video’s introduction includes text indicating Scott is running “a Republican fundraiser.” He is not. Scott has three challengers, all of whom are Democrats.

The most notable challenger is Andrea Suarez, a homeless advocate who runs We Heart Seattle, one of the state’s most effective private groups addressing Seattle homelessness.

Suarez is very much a liberal, but she doesn’t subscribe to Scott’s extremist progressive position on homelessness. Suarez rejects “harm reduction” policies that enable homeless addicts to continue to use. Her approach to homelessness, which is appropriately apolitical, has certainly attracted the attention of Republicans.

She was briefly slated to be a keynote speaker at a King County Republican fundraiser but that offer to speak was rescinded when she announced her candidacy for office. The speech was not meant to be political or to express support for her campaign, since she’s a Democrat. To call Suarez a Republican fundraiser because of one speech booking that hadn’t even occurred is disingenuous, but likely helps Scott raise money amongst his activist base that views all Republicans as evil, while they complain about issues across the state that Republicans didn’t cause.

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Shaun Scott once falsely implicated Republican college students in the death of a girl

It makes sense that Scott would overreact to a candidate who Republicans don’t loathe. He appears to be deeply triggered by Republicans.

When a 19-year-old college student tragically died at the University of Washington, Scott bizarrely blamed the campus College Republicans’ president. It was originally claimed that the student slipped on ice while on campus. Scott claimed she was the victim of “white masculinity,” and claimed that the then-president of the College Republicans was “credibly” accused of organizing “students to pour ice water on walkways.” At the time, Scott was running for Seattle city council.

“It isn’t the 1950s anymore, and you guys aren’t ‘Animal House.’ America is done suffering the ‘good clean fun’ of destructive White masculinity,” Scott tweeted at the time. “When I get elected, I will be your council member too. The community needs accountability from you.”

It’s not clear what “accountability” looked like, but Scott had to later walk back his irresponsible and dangerous claim. The student didn’t die as a result of slipping on ice. She died after collapsing from a blood clot in her lung. Scott wasn’t held accountable for his claims. In fact, he didn’t even offer an apology. Instead, he continued to attack innocent college students.

Scott did not respond to a request for comment.

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