Slog Music

Music, Nightlife,
and Drinks

Monday, January 21, 2013

New Sonics a Big Win for Mayor McGinn

Posted by on Mon, Jan 21, 2013 at 8:59 AM

Now that the league has officially confirmed the sale of the Sacramento Kings to Chris Hansen's ownership group, it is hard not to think about the impact this will have on this year's mayoral election. And it is even harder to think that this impact will be anything but good for Mayor Mike McGinn.

If the NBA owners approve the deal—reportedly a mere formality—a Sonics team will be back at Key Arena next fall, their inaugural season opening just days before the November election. But this momentous tipoff will come after months of steadily building hype and buzz. If there's one thing voters will know about McGinn it is that the Sonics returned to Seattle on his watch.

And it was more than just something that passively happened on his watch. It was McGinn who negotiated with Hansen the framework for an arena deal that was eventually approved by both the Seattle and King County councils, and who helped shepherd it past political and media obstacles. Two of McGinn's mayoral opponents, council members Tim Burgess and Bruce Harrell, voted to approve the arena deal. It will be interesting to see how Burgess and Harrell attempt to brand the mayor as unaccomplished at the same time the return of the Sonics dominates the headlines.

It's not that voters will decide: "Basketball! Yay! I'm voting for McGinn!" No more than voters shoved former Mayor Greg Nickels aside simply because the Sonics left on his watch. But major professional sports franchises are rare commodities, and whatever credit he truly deserves, the Sonics return strongly runs counter to the narrative that McGinn is an ineffective politician with poisonous interpersonal skills.

Facing a council of rivals and a phalanx of hostile newspaper editorialists, McGinn managed to buck the "Seattle Way" and push through approval of a major public infrastructure project in record time. That's an accomplishment in itself, whether you support the arena or not.

I don't know whether that's enough to carry McGinn through the August primary, but it sure doesn't hurt his prospects.


Comments (26) RSS

Oldest First Unregistered On Registered On Add a comment
union shop
Posted by tim koch on January 21, 2013 at 9:12 AM · Report this
thats 10 on dan from you goldy.
Posted by tim koch on January 21, 2013 at 9:13 AM · Report this
Fucking typical fanboy douchebag spin
Posted by The Stranger's in the bag on January 21, 2013 at 9:16 AM · Report this
ah, i feel better now. i don't mess around with the house staff goldy.
Posted by tim koch on January 21, 2013 at 9:22 AM · Report this
Much less likely. Fuck the Sonics.
Posted by treehugger on January 21, 2013 at 9:27 AM · Report this
seandr 6
It will alienate his young, too-cool-for-team-sports base. Women voters are as a whole ambivalent at best. And it's unclear how much credit basketball lovers will give him (or how much he deserves) for this.

Best case scenario - he's knocked out of the primary with 11% of the vote compared to 8%. Ed Murray is going to be our next mayor.
Posted by seandr on January 21, 2013 at 9:38 AM · Report this
It's his killing of bin Laden.
Posted by DOUG. on January 21, 2013 at 9:42 AM · Report this
triv = tiger woods
Posted by tim koch on January 21, 2013 at 10:01 AM · Report this
Big win for McGinn?

So a guy who was supposedly the Mayor for the neighborhoods fails to achieve the goal of his single issue candidacy and instead throws his lot in with the Downtown Syndicate and the Billionerds with an even more congestion producing centrist project and calls it "success"?
Posted by Supreme Ruler Of The Universe http://_ on January 21, 2013 at 10:23 AM · Report this
Kinison 10
Come on liberals! Sign those petitions, lets block the Sonics from returning and earn the scorn of moderate democrats everywhere!
Posted by Kinison on January 21, 2013 at 10:30 AM · Report this
Frank Blethen's vodka distiller 11
@9 Pissed off because they won't play in the Tacoma Dome?
Posted by Frank Blethen's vodka distiller on January 21, 2013 at 10:35 AM · Report this
Nicely put, and it's a good test of the challengers. Whoever manages an effective counter will be the one to watch.

We should bear in mind, too, that this particular mayor has all the skills to be his own undoing on this. His self-righteousness remains keen, and it's always on the prowl for creative new ways to entice him into burning his political capital. Could be fun.
Posted by gloomy gus on January 21, 2013 at 10:42 AM · Report this
Is it a sure thing that they will be the Supersonics? Personally, I think they should retain the Kings name retroactively in honor of MLK, just as the county did. Or is it disrespectful to name something as trivial as a sports team after such an honorable man?
Posted by bwouns on January 21, 2013 at 10:51 AM · Report this
Teslick 14
Wayne LaPierre could endorse McGinn and Goldy would say "Big Win!".

I enjoy your writing most of the time, Goldy, but I would hope you learned something from your unconditional Darcy Burner shill days.
Posted by Teslick on January 21, 2013 at 10:56 AM · Report this
Reverse Polarity 15
I'm indifferent to the return of the Sonics, and I'm indifferent to McGinn. I don't think he's a terrible mayor, but I don't think he's a particularly good one either.

But I agree with Goldy that the Sonics narrative will undoubtedly help him in the election. It will bump his approval rating up a few points, for sure. And even though I'm indifferent to the Sonics, I think the stadium deal was actually a pretty good deal for the city--certainly far better than the shitty deal the previous Sonics owners were trying to blackmail us with.
Posted by Reverse Polarity on January 21, 2013 at 10:56 AM · Report this
lets be real here, if this hansen guy is gonna just about pay off the entire city to make this happen, then he must a (super) sonics fan. so give them the old uniforms too and union shop too. and nhl hockey too and wnba too. goldy, union shop. watch those ballmer alec guys, they don't like that shit.
Posted by tim koch on January 21, 2013 at 11:06 AM · Report this
pfffter 17
Barf. Yea, our ham-handed mayor has done nothing to reform SPD and has been a political jackass for most of his term but FUCK YEAH BASKETBALL. if Seattle reelects this dolt, they truly get the mayor they deserve.
Posted by pfffter on January 21, 2013 at 11:13 AM · Report this
I'm not a sports fan, but it's undeniable that the Sonics and Storm Foundation helps kids. Having Sonics Basketball Camp back in full swing among the other benefits sure wont hurt the Mayor either. The Foundation is a tremendous side benefit for our city.
Posted by Stewartia malacodendron. on January 21, 2013 at 11:21 AM · Report this
17: he ain't getting reelected, tim keck and slog just work for mike mcginn now. i think its totally corrupt too, but i also don't live there either. go supersonikings!…
Posted by tim koch on January 21, 2013 at 11:36 AM · Report this
MrBaker 20
Goldy, McGinn and Tim Burgess share this.
McGinn, an apparent "idea man" nearly bungled this thing from the word go.

Regardless, having an opening night roughly a week before the election will make it difficult for Peter Steinbrueck to straddle that pre-election fence the way McGinn did with the tunnel

Steinbrueck's paid gigs will come back as a string of obstructionist positions supported by a lobbyist.
Posted by MrBaker on January 21, 2013 at 11:57 AM · Report this
Cato the Younger Younger 21
How does bringing back the Sonics really help Seattle with it's long term problems? The contruction jobs will only be temporary then to be replaced with low wage concession stand jobs during games. And study after study has shown that not a single stadium built in the past 30 years has EVER created any substantial economic growth in any of the cities they have been built in.

And expect the cost overruns to be covered by the tax payers. And don't worry there are ALWAYS cost overruns on stadium projects.
Posted by Cato the Younger Younger on January 21, 2013 at 12:42 PM · Report this
The Seattle Times will work to make people think Burgess did this. Today's story gives Burgess the first word with mention in 5 of the first 10 paragraphs. Later they even print 3 paragraphs of Dow Constantine's statement. McGinn isn't mentioned until the 21st paragraph and it's only 1 graph.
Posted by don't believe the seattle times on January 21, 2013 at 1:54 PM · Report this
22: burgess is darth vader f that guy he is evil.
Posted by tim koch on January 21, 2013 at 1:58 PM · Report this
i mean to say i agree with you there up there. but i can't see what you wrote its hidden.
Posted by tim koch on January 21, 2013 at 2:02 PM · Report this
MacCrocodile 25
I'd rather have the kind of Sonics that serve chili dogs.
Posted by MacCrocodile on January 21, 2013 at 2:13 PM · Report this
A success for Goldy's pandering and little else.
Posted by hmmmmm on January 21, 2013 at 2:58 PM · Report this

Add a comment


All contents © Index Newspapers, LLC
1535 11th Ave (Third Floor), Seattle, WA 98122
Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Use | Takedown Policy