Yesterday, the Seattle Weekly reported that Alison Holcomb is seriously considering running for city council. That's great news! We've been fans of hers for a long time. But the last time Holcomb's name was tossed around for city council, polls circulated that pitted her against Mike O'Brien and Nick Licata. While we love Holcomb, Dominic Holden said at the time that he didn't want her to run against the (then) two most progressive members of the council. Seems like good advice to me!
Well, now it sounds like Holcomb would likely be targeting Kshama Sawant's seat. And that sucks. I agree with Seattlish on this one: We need more progressive members of the council. We don't need to kick the most progressive members of the council to the curb. I also intensely dislike Holcomb's characterization of Sawant in the Weekly interview:
Holcomb, a resident of Capitol Hill, said Sawant is not an effective messenger for the cause of economic inequality, finding alternatives to the city’s regressive tax system, “and our inability to fund education.” She added, “You don’t effect change without a broad coalition, and her rhetoric is all about ‘you are a capitalist pig,’ no matter what the size of your business.”
Huh. Really? Because I'd argue that with her spearheading of the $15 NOW movement, Sawant did more to combat income inequality than any other politician in the city. She's been effective, and she's been a voice for people who otherwise feel as though they've been silenced by the political process. I'm not willing to follow Holcomb down that road when there are politicians like Sally Clark sitting on the council taking up space. I'd argue that we've got way too many coalition-builders and not enough politicians who actually, you know, do stuff on the city council. And I'd also argue that Holcomb doesn't need to launch what strikes me as anti-socialist fear-mongering that mischaracterizes Sawant's position when she's got her own excellent record to stand on.
But that's what I think. What do you think?