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Ed Murray will not run for mayor as write-in candidate, endorses Durkan

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray has recently faced multiple allegations of sexual abuse dating back to the 1980s. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray said he’s been “seriously considering” a run for re-election as a write-in candidate. But he decided against it.

“I love this city and I love serving as your mayor,” he said as he made his announcement not to run on Thursday morning.

Murray also announced that he is supporting former U.S. Attorney Jenny Durkan.

Murray has been polling voters recently to decide whether or not to resume his campaign. KIRO Radio reporter Mike Lewis was told too much damage has been done for Murray to be an effective candidate.

“He is done,” Lewis reported before Murray made his announcement.

The deadline to file as a write-in candidate is July 14.

Since Murray stepped out of the race, the list of candidates grew significantly, including some relatively well-known names.

Meet Seattle’s mayoral candidates for 2017

Of those candidates, former U.S. Attorney Jenny Durkan and former Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn are leading, according to several polls. State Sen. Bob Hasegawa is also in the mix, even ahead of McGinn in one poll.

Lewis points out that Durkan and Murray share many of the same supporters. Murray’s departure will likely give Durkan a solid foothold in the race.

Murray dropped from the mayoral race in May. The decision to not run for re-election followed allegations that decades ago he sexually abused four minors.

“This campaign for mayor, any campaign for mayor, must be about the future of this city,” he said at the time.

Murray continued to deny the allegations leveled against him.

Earlier this month, the attorney of Murray’s accuser filed paperwork to withdraw the lawsuit while the accuser, Delvonn Heckard of Kent, finishes rehab and counseling.

“Mr. Heckard feels as though it would be wise to complete his extensive counseling and recovery this December prior to moving forward with this matter,” the decision filed by attorney Lincoln Beauregard reads. “Additionally, Mr. Heckard determined that it would be better for the success of his lawsuit, and the citizens of the City of Seattle, for this matter to proceed at a later point in time after Mayor Murray is no longer sitting in power.

“At present, Mr. Heckard feels as though Mayor Murray garners litigation benefits by defending this lawsuit while simultaneously sitting as the Mayor.”

Murray responded to the decision, saying it vindicates him.

“This lawsuit was a painful experience … for victims of sexual abuse,” he said. “It was a painful experience for the vulnerable people who seem to have been exploited by an attorney with a publicity agenda … It was a painful experience for me, it was a painful experience for Michael, my husband, and a painful experience for my family.”

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