The Washington State supreme court just gave the green light to the billionaire-backed, right-wing recall campaign against Kshama Sawant, Seattle’s socialist city councilmember. We need to go all out to defend Kshama and our movement!
This ruling comes only three days after Kshama’s Right to Counsel bill passed, a major victory for Seattle’s housing movement. This bill gives every Seattle renter facing evictions the right to a lawyer, and is a perfect example of why Seattle’s corporate elite are determined to recall Kshama and push city hall to the right.
Big business and the right wing are furious about the impact of socialist politics and social movements in Seattle and how we have inspired working people around the country. They are now trying to use the courts and their deep pockets to overturn Councilmember Sawant’s 2019 re-election and the historic victories she has spearheaded: the Amazon Tax, the $15 minimum wage, landmark renters rights laws like the ban on winter evictions, and Black Lives Matter victories like the first-in-nation ban on using chemical weapons against protesters. In fact, the state supreme court that has now approved the right-wing recall against Kshama is the same court that blocked a grassroots recall against Amazon’s Mayor Jenny Durkan after she led a brutal crackdown on the Justice for George Floyd protests last summer. Since the movement’s height last summer, courts across the US have clamped down on the movement, targeting activists with trumped-up charges while letting killer cops walk free. Just as with the police under capitalism, we know that working people and oppressed communities cannot rely on the courts for justice.
It is no accident that this Recall Campaign against Councilmember Sawant explicitly cites her support for the Black Lives Matter movement and the Amazon Tax in the articles of recall, while also making numerous false claims that she broke the law. Unfortunately, thanks to the inherently undemocratic recall procedures in Washington State, Kshama never got the chance to defend herself against these false charges, and, shockingly, there was no legal requirement that the charges be proven true in order for the recall to be allowed to go on the ballot.
We cannot afford to sit by while one of the most effective leaders for working people in the nation is undemocratically and dishonestly driven from office by a right-wing, corporate-funded campaign.
We need all hands on deck to launch our fight back. Join us, along with progressive leaders and activists at 11am this Saturday April 3 for a socially-distanced rally at Cal Anderson to build the Kshama Solidarity Campaign and defend against this attack on all working people!