The Stranger: Recall PAC money drops!

For months now, we’ve been talking about how the moneyed interests backing the right-wing Recall will stop at nothing to remove our socialist fighter, Kshama Sawant, from the City Council. They failed in the last election – in 2019, Amazon and big business poured more than $1.4 million into our race, resulting in a flurry of corporate mailers and ads in an attempt to buy the election.

Now, they’re taking no chances. In just the last few days, a new PAC called “A Better Seattle” has raised more than $130,000 from corporate real estate giants and Trump mega-donors like Martin Selig. As ballots drop into District 3 mailboxes, we can expect that this PAC will spend big to spread right-wing lies to as many voters as they can.As The Stranger reported today, this PAC opens the way for the wealthiest Recall donors to vastly increase their influence and control over this election. “With a new PAC, many Recall Sawant donors are double dipping. About 54% of the donors to A Better Seattle have also contributed to the Sawant Recall PAC. One-third of A Better Seattle contributors have already given all they can legally give to Recall Sawant, and a quarter of its donors have maxed out in both anti-Sawant PACs.”

And they may soon be able to give even more. The “A Better Seattle” PAC asked the Washington Public Disclosure Commission to lift their $1,000 contribution limit, so they can raise unlimited amounts of money from their absurdly rich donors. Many of these wealthy donors have already spent tens of thousands of dollars funding corporate campaigns during the November elections. 

Developer John Runstad and his wife Judy maxed out donations to both the PAC and the Recall Campaign for a combined total of $4,000 to oust Kshama. They also put $35,000 into a PAC behind mayor-elect Bruce Harrell, which also received  $10,000 from Runstad’s property management company, Wright Runstad & Company.

Many of the PAC’s donors also gave thousands of dollars this summer to the big business-backed initiative Compassion Seattle that sought to criminalize homelessness, and to the PAC that supported Ann Davison for City Attorney, now the first elected Republican in Seattle in 30 years. 

We need to push back NOW against the right-wing Recall’s attempt to buy this election. In order to fight the Recall’s voter suppression and get the highest turnout from working people possible, we need to knock on tens of thousands more doors before this election is over. With the rain and cold getting worse, the holiday season nearly upon us, and the PAC money about to transform into mailers and ads filled with lies, we need your help. 

In the past week, we’ve been able to send out two mailers about Kshama’s incredible record as a fighter for working people and why we need to keep her in office. 

We’ll need to send out more of these to District 3 voters to combat the misinformation and outright lies being spread by the Recall and their new PAC. 

Mailers like this cost thousands of dollars. The reason we’ve been able to send out this vital information to thousands of working-class voters in the district is because more than TEN THOUSAND grassroots donors have chipped in their hard-earned money to this campaign, including more than 4,100 donors in District 3. Can you donate any amount – whether that’s $100, $50, or even $5 – to make sure we can continue fighting the lies from the right-wing Recall Campaign and their new PAC?

Lastly, ballots are OUT! If you’re a District 3 voter and have received your ballot, DON’T WAIT – open it up, vote “NO” on the recall, sign and date your envelope, then just drop it into your mailbox, a blue post box, or a ballot drop box TODAY! 


Greyson Van Arsdale

Kshama Solidarity Campaign