Last week, long term incumbent Seattle City Councilmember Richard Conlin, considered a liberal democrat, claimed victory over Socialist Alternative candidate Kshama Sawant by a roughly 53% to 46% margin in a race for a Seattle City Council seat.  Sawant ran an unconventional and grossly underfunded campaign with a combination of old and new: a strong group of door to door volunteers and a strong social media presence, and with an uncompromising message: 15$ an hour minimum wage, rent control, and a millionaire’s tax. That she got over 46% of the vote was considered by many remarkable given that she ran as a socialist against an incumbent democrat.

But it gets much, much better.

As the tens of thousands of mailed ballots are still being counted Sawant is gaining ground. As of last Friday she trailed Conlin 50.5% to 49.5% and observers have noted that if the remaining uncounted ballots break as they have been Sawant could actually win.

What’s the lesson here? Even with the dreaded ” S ” word attached to her name, Sawant may well yet demonstrate that a determined and  committed group of energized people, holding true to their convictions, can defeat big money, incumbency, and major political party machinery.  Stay tuned.

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8 Responses to The most underreported political story in the country

  1. John Casper says:

    Nice catch, first I’d heard of it.

  2. nonquixote says:

    Been watching this and thanks for bringing it here, Steve.

    Interesting take on economic pain in the US, sequestration and the outcome of our current PTB in DC failing to take needed actions to reign in capitalism gone awry, also some historical references to US depressions and worsening of our present economic collapse from Thom Hartmann.

    Well worth a listen. This relates to economic possibilities that small steps to socialistic remedies can bring.

    http://www.democracynow.org/2013/11/12/the_crash_of_2016_thom_hartmann?autostart=true

  3. After todays vote count Sawant is leading by 41 votes. This is an incredible story unfolding out in Seattle. If she wins she’ll be the first open socialist ever seated on the Seattle City Council.

  4. This is great story. While many want to make the use of the term Socialist a negative, I’d point to Milwaukee’s “Sewer Socialists” as an example of the good that can be done if folks dig a little deeper than talking points and rhetoric.

  5. Seattle alternative newspaper The Stranger is projecting that Sawant will win.

    http://slog.thestranger.com/slog/archives/2013/11/12/kshama-sawant-takes-the-lead

    Unbelievable if it wasn’t actually happening. This is what democracy looks like!

  6. John Casper says:

    More national coverage from “The Nation.”

    “Could a Socialist Actually Win Seattle’s City Council Race? Yes”

    http://www.thenation.com/blog/177155/socialist-seattle

  7. nonquixote says:

    Dr Jill Stein on Moyers and Co. Online or re-run this weekend. A must see interview if you claim to be a progressive.

    “…is rejecting the feeling of powerlessness…to reclaim democracy in the future.”

    http://billmoyers.com/episode/full-show-the-path-of-positive-resistance/

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