JASON RANTZ

Rantz: Nikkita Oliver ignores media, then plays victim

May 10, 2017, 6:42 AM | Updated: 10:06 am

seattle Mayoral candidate, Nikkita Oliver...

Nikkita Oliver. (Zorn Taylor)

(Zorn Taylor)

Nikkita Oliver just outed herself as a professional victim, and she’s using this contrived storyline to fundraise. It’s very Trumpian.

“I appreciate those who have advocated against my erasure and denial of my candidacy in local media,” Oliver recently tweeted. “Thank you for fighting so we can be seen. With today’s changes in the mayoral race, I have now raised the most funds of any current candidate ($31K+)… yet many local news outlets, with each new announcement, choose not to mention my name when discussing the current candidate pool.”

I find this hard to believe, particularly since … it’s demonstrably untrue.

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I hear her name mentioned on KIRO Radio on a regular basis (especially on the Jason and Burns Show) and she recently appeared on Seattle’s Morning News. She was just featured in a KING 5 piece and KIRO 7 has scores of coverage. About 4 hours before Oliver’s tweets, the Seattle Times gave her top billing (and a lead photo) in a story titled “5 things you need to know about Seattle’s mayoral race.” That seems rather substantial. And 50 minutes before her tweets, she was mentioned in The Stranger.

Now, would she like to get more press? Sure. But she’s dealing with two problems: She’s running against a ton of candidates all competing for media coverage and Oliver and her campaign are very hard to reach. They’ve turned us down multiple times — with their silence.

Our Jason and Burns Show producer has often reached out to the Nikkita Oliver campaign, but their voicemail box has been full for a couple of weeks. We’ve texted to what we believe is a cell phone number — their campaign number — and have received no response.

I’ve personally reached out to Oliver on three separate occasions via Twitter and all three requests have gone ignored. Perhaps she’s ignoring us. That’s certainly her prerogative, but it seems silly and dishonest to complain about some conspiracy in the media to deny her candidacy when the leading talk station in town is reaching out to you on a regular basis.

If they’re not getting covered, perhaps it’s because no reporter or producer can reach her? Perhaps this is by design (her website, for example, doesn’t list any way to contact her that I can see, making it difficult to track down her campaign’s info). I suspect this is Twitter whining with a greater purpose.

Much like Trump, Oliver is creating a phony narrative that the media is out to harm her campaign. She’ll use that narrative to activate her supporters to feel like they’re fighting an uphill battle to support a candidate they believe in. Heck, they’ll need to donate more money since she’ll have to do this all herself, without media support. Oh please.

The truth is, we have candidates competing for limited air time (and interest) and her campaign doesn’t seem very organized. There’s no erasure of her candidacy, certainly not by me — I liked her candidacy and what she adds to the conversation. Though what she’s currently adding to the conversation is useless and disingenuous complaining, so maybe I misjudged what she could bring to the race.

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Rantz: Nikkita Oliver ignores media, then plays victim