highlights record level of Independent Expenditures, linking candidates, issues, and financial backers

New site shows how business lobby groups are spending big bucks in Seattle City Council primaries — and what their priorities are

The more you know about who’s spending money to support a candidate, the more you know about what to expect from them. That’s the principle behind a new website from Working Washington — — which highlights the massive spending by business lobby groups in this year’s City Council primaries. 

This year, these business lobby groups are pumping more money into this primary election than has been seen in every previous council & mayoral election — combined. details the nearly $200,000 in spending in the past few weeks by lobby groups representing big business, hotel & restaurant chains, landlords, and the real estate industry — and who it’s going to support. As the new site shows, these are the same groups which have opposed raising the minimum wage, opposed paid sick days, opposed any moves to make rents more affordable, opposed making the rich pay their fair share of taxes, and even opposed funding for homelessness prevention. links the candidates and the business groups which are spending big to back them. While the law requires that business lobby “independent expenditure” money be spent independently of campaigns, these groups do ask candidates to complete endorsement questionnaires, and typically interview candidates and even host receptions for the candidates. Business lobby groups wouldn’t just throw their money away, so you have to assume they’re only spending this much money if they have a good reason to support their favored candidate. 
“Why have these groups have decided to spend so big to support these candidates?” asked Sejal Parikh, Working Washington Executive Director. ”Right now, all we know is that the same groups who oppose workers at every turn have decided to invest tens of thousands of dollars in electing certain candidates to the Seattle City Council. Seattle voters ought to know more about which candidates are supported by those groups.” 

The new Run for the Money website brings these issues to the forefront of the electoral debate in the final week before the August 4th primary elections: