For months, the talk around City Hall has been who will run for the City Council post being vacated by outgoing council head Sue Donaldson.


Silent running

For months, the talk around City Hall has been who will run for the City Council post being vacated by outgoing council head Sue Donaldson.

Already, several people have filed for the council race, with the majority assumed to be running for the open spot or spots that will be available (excepting that handful of suicidal zealots wanting to run against incumbents): Dawn Mason, Douglas Mays, Judy Nicastro, Daniel Norton, and most recently Cheryl Chow.

But many more are hanging back, waiting to see who the competition is and what money will be available, and to better assess their chances. Here's a preview of a number of potential candidates who haven't filed yet. Some may surprise you.

Charlie Chong: Is said to be restless in retirement, and disappointed that Nick Licata and Peter Steinbrueck aren't doing enough to torment his political enemies. Besides, he misses his buddies at The Seattle Times. Reached for comment, Chong went on a long, rambling soliloquy about Lincoln Logs.

Joel Horn: Horn, the housing adviser to Paul Schell and a highly placed functionary for influential megadeveloper Wright Runstad & Co., fills the business community's need for a sixth reliable advocate on the City Council. Horn's vision of municipal government is simple: "Location, location, location."

Jane Noland: Rumor has it she's still looking for the campaign theme she misplaced during 1997's mayoral contest, but that's not the real reason for the return of the popular former council member. "If Charlie's running, I'm running" says No-land. "I hate that little creep."

Phil Condit: The current chair/CEO of Boeing is said to lament the city's inability to use a jet fighter fleet to carpet-bomb annoying neighborhood activists. The police guild has already endorsed him.

Sherry Harris: Adding to the list of former council members looking to mount a comeback is the persistent Harris, who already has plenty of yard signs and is banking on the widespread appeal of her new slogan, "Need a Job? Me, Too."

Cathy Allen: The once-prestigious political consultant is said to be considering a run so that she can have a client this year.

Paul Allen: Allen could buy the entire city, but has reportedly decided to forgo that option and run for office instead. Fueling his decision: his enchantment with his previous electoral success buying a statewide stadium vote for the Seahawks, and his outrage over a Darth Sidran initiative that threatens stiff jail sentences for bad electric guitar playing.

Sam Smith: With Chow's candidacy and the possible entry of Chong, Noland, and Harris, this popular former council member is also considering a comeback. Smith is perhaps best known for the practice of answering his own phone, a practice he continued even after his untimely death. When it was pointed out that the dead rarely make dynamic council members, Smith replied, "Neither do Martha Choe or Jan Drago."

Darth Sidran: "D.S." is not planning to give up his current position, but will simultaneously run for and serve on the City Council so that he can both make and enforce city laws. He also wants to be deputized by the King County Sheriff's Department. To give his popularity a boost, Sidran is banking on his upcoming major role in this summer's biggest blockbuster movie. It's unclear whether he can use the worldwide sale of action figures to help bankroll his campaign.

Jean Godden: She's well-known, popular, and she knows where all the skeletons are buried.

John Matthew Fox: In one of the biggest surprises of the campaign so far, it turns out the longtime housing advocate and the former aide to Charlie Chong are actually the same person. According to John, the subterfuge, replete with bad hairpiece, came about because "I was afraid Sidran would have me arrested for my guitar playing." Fox has already issued a lengthy position paper on the Seattle Housing Authority's misappropriation of Lincoln Logs.

Blake Nordstrom: One of six Nordstrom co-presidents, he already runs the city, but the Nordstrom family is said to want the opportunity to steal lots of office supplies.

Ken Griffey Jr.: Actually, it's not known whether Griffey himself is interested in the City Council post. However, Seattle Mariners team officials, desperate for a way to meet Griffey's exorbitant salary demands when his contract comes due next year, have informed the City Council that they will move the team to Nashville unless the council amends the city charter to name Griffey to the upcoming vacant post. Expected to be next on the team's list of demands is the hiking of City Council salaries to $12.5 million per year. Told that the City Council did not have the authority to unilaterally amend the city charter, one team spokesman replied, "Oh, just shut up and do it." Replied a key city official, "Woof."

Hey, Norm!

Memo to Police Chief Norm Stamper: Thanks for your kind words regarding my column on male violence (see Letters, this issue)—unfortunately even more appropriate now, with last week's horrifying and senseless murders in Snoqualmie. And hey, now that we're on the same page, how 'bout a civilian review board for SPD? Even if your officers are infallible (and given human nature, what are the odds?), it would boost a significant chunk of the city's confidence in your force, to know that you were confident enough to weather outside review. Just a thought.

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