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Seattle elects first woman mayor since 1920s

November 9, 2017
Associated Press

SEATTLE (AP) — The booming liberal city of Seattle will get its first woman mayor since the 1920s after former U.S. Attorney Jenny Durkan defeated urban planner Cary Moon for the office left open by a sex abuse scandal.

Durkan maintained her 20-point lead Wednesday when a second batch of ballots was tabulated and released in the all mail-in election.

Durkan captured just over 60 percent of the votes while Moon tallied about 40 percent.

Seattle voters chose between Durkan and Moon to replace former Mayor Ed Murray, who resigned earlier this year amid accusations of sexual abuse.

Because Murray resigned, Durkan will take office as soon as the election is certified in late November, instead of January.

Durkan had a message Tuesday night for the president of the United States whose policies she opposed during her campaign: "Can I just say, Donald Trump, keep your hands off Seattle."

Durkan will lead the city as it deals with the benefits and drawbacks of an economy that is booming for some but not others as e-commerce giant Amazon expands.

The two-woman matchup came after Murray dropped his re-election efforts amid accusations that he sexually abused several men. Murray denied the allegations.

Murray had been expected to easily win re-election after pushing through increases to the city's minimum wage and emerging as an opponent of Trump, whom Seattle voters overwhelmingly rejected in 2016.

The race between Durkan and Moon centered on how the city will respond to changes largely brought by Amazon, which employs about 40,000 people in Seattle. Housing prices have skyrocketed amid constant complaints about traffic and worries that the poor and middle class are being priced out.

Durkan, backed by the city's business and labor establishment, touted her managerial experience as a prosecutor. Moon, meanwhile, who formerly managed her family's manufacturing business, stressed that she's not a politician and has focused on her 20 years of activism on transit, waterfront and other city issues.

The race attracted big money. Although it was Durkan's first run for office, the well-connected player in city and state Democratic circles raised nearly $1 million. An independent-expenditure committee working on Durkan's behalf raised some $847,000 to pump into election efforts.

Moon's donations topped $355,000 with over $176,000 coming from her private bank account. An independent-expenditure group for Moon raised over $27,000.

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Associated Press reporter Manuel Valdes contributed to this story.

 
 
 

 

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