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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Mallahan: More Missed Votes

Posted by on Tue, Sep 29, 2009 at 1:01 PM

Records from King County Elections show that mayoral candidate Joe Mallahan has missed more elections than previously reported. He skipped 13 of the 25 elections since he registered to vote in April 2000—which means he’s missed more elections than he's participated in. The Seattle Times reported in May that he missed “six of the past 18 elections,” and the reelection campaign for Greg Nickels announced in August that Mallahan missed 10. But records released yesterday by elections officials show there are three more elections in which the man seeking your vote didn’t vote. According to county records, these are elections Mallahan skipped:

1) 2008 Primary Election: McDermott, governor, multiple state house and state representatives, judges, and numerous state officials

2) 2007 General Election: Initiative 960 (requiring a two-thirds majority for tax/fee increases); Referendum 67 (insurance reform); Senate Joint Resolution 8206 (Constitutional amendment requiring 1 percent of revenues transferred into rainy day fund); Engrossed House Joint Resolution 4204 (eliminated supermajority requirements for school levies); Proposition 1 (Roads/Transit); City Council races

3) 2007 Primary Election: Five city council races; one port race; one school board member

4) February 2007 Special Election: Two school propositions ($490 million capital levy, renewal of Educational Programs and Operations Levy)

5) 2005 Primary Election: County Executive; Seattle mayor, four city council races; two Monorail board members; two school board members

6) 2004 Primary Election: Senator (Murray/Nethercutt); Congress; governor, other state races; Seattle Families and Education Levy

7) February 2004 Special Election: Seattle Schools Levy

8) 2003 General Election: Five city council races and county assessor

9) 2003 Primary Election: Seattle school board, marijuana lowest priority initiative, latte tax initiative

10) May 2003 Special Election: King County regional parks levy

11) 2002 Primary Election: Congressional race primaries, Seattle Low-Income Housing Levy

12) 2001 Primary Election: Mayor’s race (when Paul Schell was ousted) and four city council races

13) February 2001 Special Election: Two Seattle School District Levies

An inventory of Mallahan’s missed elections shows he reliably participated in bigger, high-profile elections, like presidential contests and the final mayor’s race. But he's missed many of the primary and special elections. While those down-ticket races could be dismissed, those elections dealt with unglamorous operations of city government, which is exactly the sort of subjects Mallahan needs to understand—to have opinions about—to run the city. Very little of the mayor’s day-to-day work focuses on glamorous politics. And Mallahan's lack of participation in that sort of civic decision making reinforces the argument that Mallahan wasn’t invested in Seattle until he saw a top vacancy at City Hall, then essentially paid his way into the general election.

Additional reporting by news intern Garrett McCulloch


Comments (41) RSS

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Mallahan for really? Evening interview with Mallahan and McGinn with JEAN ENERSEN for KING 5 News on 10/11/09- Mallahan replied his favorite restaurant in seattle has topless waiters/waitress, KING 5 quickly ended the airing of the interview.
Posted by kat3111 on October 19, 2009 at 4:57 AM · Report this
On the campaign trail, Joe Mallahan cites affordable housing as one of his priorities, yet in the 2002 primary, when the low-income housing levy was on the ballot he didn't vote.
Posted by watchbird on October 13, 2009 at 1:04 AM · Report this
It sounds like most everyone is using this to reinforce a preexisting decision. The no tunnel idea finishes McG for me. It is a form of oppression to restrict the movement of people. The tunnel actually enhances our ability to ride bikes and let's people in Magnolia and Ballard go to the airport.
Posted by runnerbob on October 4, 2009 at 4:46 PM · Report this
Timrrr 38
Yes -- thank you!
Posted by Timrrr on October 1, 2009 at 10:40 AM · Report this

sounds like only dow is qualified to hold office
Posted by ian on September 30, 2009 at 6:43 PM · Report this
Baconcat 36
@34: McGinn missed 4, half as many as Hutchison has missed, 1/3rd as many as Mallahan has missed.

Constantine has a spotless record.

Posted by Baconcat on September 30, 2009 at 8:35 AM · Report this
So Mallahan spends a lot of money and thinks he can just waltz into the mayor's office with a history of not voting like this? Two things immediately come to mind:

1. He is an arrogant bastard.


2. He desperately needs to go away.

Posted by I Think I Hate This Joe Guy on September 29, 2009 at 7:05 PM · Report this
Timrrr 34
Again --why don't you give us McGinn's record too?

I voted for McGinn in the primary and if his record is spotless I'd like to know to throw it in other people's faces. But that's not the case is it?

(Based only on records for 2005-09 he also missed at least the 2007 primary, fyi.)

Understand this: the yellow journalism doesn't help McGinn! It just makes your arguments look biased, rather than thoughtfully reasoned--and hence more easily dismissed by the opposition.

(And, although that may leave you with a satisfying feeling right now, it doesn't do any of us any good in the long run.)

Do us all a favor and report both candidates records side-by-side in the future, please.
Posted by Timrrr on September 29, 2009 at 5:09 PM · Report this
w7ngman 33
Ah ok. Two speeding tickets around that same time.

Honestly I don't care enough to search Bellevue/Redmond/Chicago for either of them, just thought I'd throw #24 out there since I had the info.
Posted by w7ngman on September 29, 2009 at 5:04 PM · Report this
You don't need his birthdate to search Seattle Muni Court or the Washington Courts page. You may want to look under M Joseph or Mathew Joseph or Matthew Joseph. And since he has a lot of friends on the east side, it would make sense to search more broadly.

But if you wanted to add it to your calendar, I think his birthdate is 3/8/63.
Posted by Gidge on September 29, 2009 at 4:02 PM · Report this
@30 What does Slade Gorton call him?
Posted by kurisu on September 29, 2009 at 4:01 PM · Report this
Mallahan fun fact: Did you know that Joe’s college friends in Washington D.C. called him Seattle Joe or just Seattle?

(From the @mallahanformayor twitter feed)
Posted by Tweeter on September 29, 2009 at 3:51 PM · Report this
w7ngman 29
#26 what's his birthdate?
Posted by w7ngman on September 29, 2009 at 3:45 PM · Report this
w7ngman 28
#26 what makes you think I want to go anywhere?
Posted by w7ngman on September 29, 2009 at 3:43 PM · Report this
Becky S. 27
@14 I'm glad that I'm not the only one that is irked that Mallahan is running around town saying that for his whole adult live he has planned for a career politics, but meanwhile he didn't even vote regularly. Those two things do not add up at all.

If Mallahan is telling us the truth, then this doesn't speak well of his ability to plan for the future. The most basic thing you need to do to be part of the political process it to vote! The next level of involvement would be to attend a city council hearing or participate in a community group or do something. Helping at a fundraiser for your kid's private school doesn't count (Wurstfest). It also doesn't count to try and take credit for the good things your spouse did.

Posted by Becky S. on September 29, 2009 at 3:34 PM · Report this
Really, w7ngman? You want to go there? Have you run Mallahan's driving/criminal history?
Posted by Gidge on September 29, 2009 at 3:25 PM · Report this
There should be some sort of a disqualification for office if say you don't vote, or pay your taxes or refuse to show up to jury duty. These are all things that every one of us has to do. It part of our dues as citizens.
Posted by JoeGDWNTWN on September 29, 2009 at 3:24 PM · Report this
Posted by w7ngman on September 29, 2009 at 3:17 PM · Report this
w7ngman 23
You can look up McGinn's recent voting record here:…

Can anyone confirm that his birthdate is 12/17/1959?

(Incidentally, if that is his birthday, looks like he ran a red light without a driver's licen… back in 1998)
Posted by w7ngman on September 29, 2009 at 3:05 PM · Report this
@14: Excellent points. I learned more from your comment than anything this "Dominic Holdon" has written. Bravo. I wish we had a good candidate.
Posted by Josh and Kendra on September 29, 2009 at 2:57 PM · Report this
Will in Seattle 21
Normally, when you're phoning voters to get them to vote on an issue, you start with the 4/4 voters, who always vote, and then work your way down to the 3/4 voters who miss maybe 1 in 4 votes.

It's very very rare you'd ever phone a 2/4 voter.

They're just lazy. They'll say they'll vote. And then won't.
Posted by Will in Seattle on September 29, 2009 at 2:40 PM · Report this
Dominic Holden 20
@ 18) According to the records KC Elections provided, Mallahan did vote in the presidential primary in 2008. The records show nothing about a presidential primary in 2004. As far as we can recall--and records we can pull up--there was no presidential primary that year. Washington's blanket primary had been struck down and our state held only party caucuses.
Posted by Dominic Holden on September 29, 2009 at 2:27 PM · Report this
Yes, I would have to agree that anyone who runs for or holds public office should have enough interest in and engagement with politics to bother to vote. Just one more piece of evidence to show that Mallahan will be more interested in representing big business and big money rather than the general public and people of Seattle. In order to see any real change in this country, we need to start getting the big money out of politics, both locally and nationally. McGinn's campaign is a great example of this, he's more interested in listening to people and putting together strong advisory teams than soliciting big donations; his campaign is doing great, at only a fraction of the cost of Mallahan's. Which means that when he's elected he can actually make decisions based on those "progressive values" that Mallahan talks about - like building community, a healthy environment, a strong local economy, efficient and convenient public transportation - without being beholden to the big money business-as-usual interests that Joe would be.
Posted by Just_In_Seattle on September 29, 2009 at 2:24 PM · Report this
DOUG. 18
Dominic... Are you sure this accounting is correct? I've heard it mentioned before that Mallahan didn't vote in the (relatively useless) 2004 or 2008 PRESIDENTIAL primaries, but I don't see those listed here.
Posted by DOUG. on September 29, 2009 at 2:16 PM · Report this
I cannot stand the thought of Seattle having consecutive morbidly obese mayors. We are supposed to be one of the fittest cities in the country!
Posted by ian on September 29, 2009 at 2:10 PM · Report this
Mallahan most obviously doesn't care about this City enough to vote or be involved in ANY way. Until he things he can purchase being Mayor.

Joe - stop. Really. We all know who you are now, so your ego should be stroked. But we need someone who has serious interest in the nuances of policy, experience with government, and knowledge of how the council works. You don't think about this stuff enough to even vote on it, let alone be in charge of it for the next 4 years.

Posted by whoknows on September 29, 2009 at 1:50 PM · Report this
cressona 15
I have a hard time expressing the visceral contempt and loathing I have for Joe Mallahan.

When I hear Mallahan's minions mock Mike McGinn's background or suggest he's somehow unqualified, I can't help but go back to last year's Republican convention when the likes of Rudy Giuliani and Sarah Palin mocked Barack Obama for having been a community organizer.

Mike McGinn's a lawyer who has turned down the big bucks for much of his career so he could serve his community. The Joe Mallahans of the world couldn't even imagine doing such a thing.
Posted by cressona on September 29, 2009 at 1:48 PM · Report this
This is the number one reason I can't bring myself to support Joe Mallahan. His KING-5 interview last week quotes his wife saying that everything he's done in his career has been done in preparation for someday entering public service. That statement just reeks of hypocrisy when you hold it up to his involvement in the election process.

(By the way, has anyone looked at McGinn's voting record? I assume he's been more engaged but would like to hear confirmation. )

And did you see that Meg Whitman (Republican and former CEO of Ebay), who is running for Governor of California has NEVER voted in any election in her adult life (or at least for the past 28 years for which they can access records)!!

I don't much care for McGinn's anti-tunnel stance or his desire to spend tens of millions of dollars on fiber to the home (Qwest and Comcast can't make it profitable, so how does he think the City could?).

Maybe that Ed Murray write-in could still work...
Posted by Jakey on September 29, 2009 at 1:41 PM · Report this
cressona 13
The one missed vote that really sticks in my craw is the 2007 general election. Proposition 1, Roads & Transit, was one of the weightiest ballot measures in the recent history of this region. If you didn't care about Prop. 1 (one way or the other), you didn't care about the future of this region.

I'm one to give people a hard time for not volunteering for, or donating to, a local campaign. But here's a guy who couldn't even be bothered to vote on the biggest issue facing this region--transportation. And now lo and behold--all of a sudden he thinks he's qualified to be the champion of the light rail tunnel and to tell Mike McGinn he doesn't know what he's doing calling for a study of westside light rail.

Well, you gotta give the guy credit for having some chutzpah.
Posted by cressona on September 29, 2009 at 1:41 PM · Report this
Enigma 12
@6 Whenever I hear people wanting to vote FOR Mallahan, as opposed to against McGinn/Tunnel, it's because he has leadership experience as a corporate executive. No one seems to bat an eye at the state of our current economy being a product of those kinds of executives. And people don't give credit for McGinn working as a full time lawyer and being chair of the Sierra Club, or for starting Great City.
I have a feeling most anti-McGinn sentiment will fade as people realize what a stupid boondoggle the tunnel is (which probably won't be built even if McGinn's not elected due to taxing issues) and that McGinn actually has civic experience.
Posted by Enigma on September 29, 2009 at 1:40 PM · Report this
Will in Seattle 11
Dude, that's not even a C average.

More like a D.
Posted by Will in Seattle on September 29, 2009 at 1:38 PM · Report this
@7, well said.
Posted by Timothy on September 29, 2009 at 1:37 PM · Report this
Maybe Charla just voted for him...
Posted by Bout the same on September 29, 2009 at 1:31 PM · Report this
cressona 8
I was at one of the Democratic endorsement meetings and Joe Mallahan kept using the phrase "progressive values" again and again. There's got to be a rule in life, the more a politician uses a phrase like "progressive values," the more suspicious you should be of his values.
Posted by cressona on September 29, 2009 at 1:25 PM · Report this
cressona 7
What's sad is that somehow Mike McGinn gets lumped with the same unqualified label as the political newbie Joe Mallahan. Looking at McGinn's resume--both his work and his activism--it's hard to imagine someone who's paid their dues more to hold elected office in Seattle, short of actually having held elected office in Seattle.

Joe Mallahan is someone who hardly ever bothered to ask what he could do for his community until it involved running for mayor. It infuriates me that a dilettante like this can pretend to hold a candle to someone like McGinn--or Greg Nickels for that matter. What infuriates me even more is that this is a guy whose political views appear to place him squarely in the card-carrying Joe Lieberman conservative Democrat camp, the few times you can actually pin him down with some views.
Posted by cressona on September 29, 2009 at 1:24 PM · Report this
Has anyone bothered to look into Mallahan's past in Chicago yet? My guess is that you'd find a similar record there.

Can a coherent case be made to vote FOR Mallahan rather than simply FOR the tunnel or Against McGinn?

If so, I've yet to see it.
Posted by Timothy on September 29, 2009 at 1:24 PM · Report this
Hernandez 5
See, when it comes to my vote, I can never get past this. A mayoral candidate who cannot be bothered to vote in elections dealing with city issues should not be elected. Period.
Posted by Hernandez on September 29, 2009 at 1:21 PM · Report this
Awesome public records digging. This confirms my decision to vote for the crypto-ignoramus instead of the ignoramus.
Posted by gloomy gus on September 29, 2009 at 1:21 PM · Report this
Anyone who doesn't even bother to vote doesn't deserve my vote. Voting is the most basic responsibility of a citizen, and Joe couldn't even fulfill that basic responsibility. I would consider excusing this if Joe missed votes for a good reason or if Joe had any sort of record of civic involvement to demonstrate that he cares about Seattle, but no, he's got nothing; except a lot of his own money.
Posted by CMB on September 29, 2009 at 1:21 PM · Report this
zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz - old, old, old.

Mr Absentee - get with it. We ALL vote by mail. Absentee is so old news.

So it is still Mr. Yuk vs Mr Yawn?

Seattle get ready for the City Council to run the city. It will be the Burgess - Bagshaw cabal.
Posted by Sex is religion, Jesus delivers orgasms on September 29, 2009 at 1:14 PM · Report this
And he says he was inspired by Obama's race? I'm surprised he even knew he was running.

Mallahan is only running because he can. Fair enough. But that's not good enough for my vote.

Posted by Absentee on September 29, 2009 at 1:07 PM · Report this

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