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Primary ELECTION: August 1st, 2017

The Progressive Voters Guide compiles the information that allows you to make informed decisions about the races on your ballot, based on your values. Vote in every race on your ballot! It's our right and our responsibility. We will continue to add more candidates, ballot measures, and endorsements as we get closer to the election. Please share this guide with your friends and family!

This guide only contains races that will be on your August 1st Primary Ballot. We will update the guide for the general election.

King County Ballot Measures

Depending on where you live, you may have the following ballot measures on your ballot.

King County Proposition #1

Vote YES on Prop 1: Access for All

YES
Public funding for arts and science programs has been cut in half over the last decade. These cuts predominantly hurt schools in low-income communities, despite the fact that exposure to arts, science, and heritage experiences can dramatically improve a child's educational success. King County Prop. 1 will improve education outcomes for every student in King County by expanding access to arts, science, and heritage education. Prop. 1 will fund in-class programs and free field trips for every student in every district to our region's world-class museums, science institutions, and cultural centers, as well as provide free and reduced-price memberships to regional institutions for people on a fixed budget, including seniors, low-income, and middle-class families. Finally, Prop 1. will provide stable funding for more than 300 small community-based arts, science, and heritage institutions throughout the entire county, with money set aside to further boost grants for small organizations that primarily serve communities of color.

Access for All is funded by a 1/10 of one cent increase in the county sales tax, or one penny for every $10 you spend. Vote YES on Proposition 1 to ensure every student in King County has access to arts, science, and heritage education.

Campaign Information

31st Legislative District

State Senator

Michelle Rylands

Democrat
Michelle Rylands photo
Michelle Rylands is an Army veteran and PTA president running against incumbent Senator Phil Fortunato. She is strongly in favor of fully funding K-12 education, and also advocates for fixing our state's upside-down tax code and helping local small businesses.

Fortunato was chosen by Republicans to replace long-time Sen. Pam Roach. While he is very conservative on many issues, he deserves credit for playing a key role in breaking the final state budget impasse this year by pushing his Republican colleagues to fund the contracts of state employees. Nevertheless, Rylands is the best choice in this race.

Progressive Endorsements & Supporters

Teamsters Local 117

Campaign Information

State Representative, Position #2

Nate Lowry

Democrat
Nate Lowry photo
Nate Lowry is a landscape architect and Edgewood city councilmember who has been a strong progressive voice in Edgewood. He's running for the 31st District House seat to fix Washington's upside-down tax code and fund Head Start and STEM education. He is running against Republican Morgan Irwin, who was recently appointed to this seat. Lowry is the progressive choice in this race.

Campaign Information

King County

Depending on where you live, you may have the below races on your ballot.

King County Executive

Dow Constantine

Non-Partisan
Dow Constantine photo
Incumbent Dow Constantine has been a strong and effective leader for King County. In his three terms, Constantine has defended King County Metro transit service, improved key infrastructure, and promoted the health of our natural environment. Constantine is leading efforts to protect King County from the Trump administration by proposing to triple the Veterans and Human Services Levy and offering regional support for the Paris climate agreement.

He is running against three perennial candidates: Goodspaceguy, retired engineer and light rail opponent Bill Hirt, and physicist Stan Lippmann. Constantine has clearly earned another term as county executive.

Campaign Information

Port Commission

Depending on where you live, you may have the below races on your ballot.

Port Commissioner, Position #1

We believe there are several good candidates in this race. John Creighton has earned the most support from our Progressive Voters Guide partner organizations in the primary.

John Creighton

John Creighton photo
John Creighton is running for his fourth term on the Port of Seattle Commission. He has sought to increase public accountability and protect family-wage jobs at the port. Creighton also helped create the Northwest Seaport Alliance so that Seattle and Tacoma are working collaboratively instead of in competition against one another.

We were extremely disappointed that Creighton voted in 2015 to allow Shell Oil to base its arctic drilling operations in Seattle. Nevertheless, Creighton has earned the broadest support from progressive advocates in this race.

Campaign Information

Ryan Calkins

Ryan Calkins photo
Progressive Ryan Calkins is challenging the incumbent, John Creighton, to bring new leadership to the Port of Seattle. Calkins is a small business owner who supports a $15 minimum wage and wants to improve environmental protections at the Port. He has proposed electrifying port vehicles to reduce pollution and the carbon footprint of the port. Calkins has earned the support of many local Democratic organizations while Creighton has the lead among labor unions and progressive advocacy organizations.

Also running in this race is former state Senator Claudia Kauffman. Currently the Intergovernmental Affairs Liaison for the Muckleshoot Indian Tribe, she was an effective progressive legislator in Olympia and was the first Native American woman elected to the state Senate in Washington history.

Campaign Information

Port Commissioner, Position #3

We believe there are several good candidates in this race. Stephanie Bowman has earned the most support from our Progressive Voters Guide partner organizations in the primary

Stephanie Bowman

Stephanie Bowman photo
Stephanie Bowman has an extensive background in economic development, transportation, and community planning. Prior to joining the Port of Seattle, Bowman was the Manager of Federal Governmental Affairs for the Port of Tacoma and the Greater Seattle Chamber of Commerce. Bowman has focused on jobs and trade as Port Commissioner, including connecting students in Seattle Public Schools with internships at the Port.

We were extremely disappointed that Bowman voted in 2015 to allow Shell Oil to base its arctic drilling operations in Seattle. However, like her colleague John Creighton, Bowman has earned the broadest support from progressive advocates.

Campaign Information

Ahmed Abdi

Ahmed Abdi photo
Ahmed Abdi is a Somali immigrant who fled a civil war to start a family here in Seattle. He worked as an organizer on the campaign to raise the SeaTac minimum wage to $15 per hour and other workers' rights issues. Today, he provides trainings to low-wage workers about their labor rights through the Fair Work Center.

Also running in this race is Lisa Espinosa, a sustainability consultant with the King County Housing Authority who is not running a viable campaign.

Progressive Endorsements & Supporters

Teamsters Local 117

Campaign Information

Port Commissioner, Position #4

We believe there are several good candidates in this race. John Persak has earned the most support from our Progressive Voters Guide partner organizations in the primary.

John Persak

John Persak photo
John Persak has been a longshore worker for the last 13 years and has worked on port issues for the last six years through the Longshoremen Worker’s Union. In addition to supporting a working waterfront, Persak supports policies to reduce the port’s environmental impact and wants to protect low-income neighborhoods and communities of color around the Port. Persak has earned strong support from labor unions and a sole endorsement from the King County Democrats.

Campaign Information

Peter Steinbrueck

Peter Steinbrueck  photo
Progressive former City Council president Peter Steinbrueck is also a strong candidate for Port of Seattle Position 4. He is drawing upon his lengthy experience in public policy and civic activism to build a campaign platform focused on making the Port of Seattle a leader in reducing carbon emissions and protecting shorelines. Steinbrueck has earned the support of several local Democratic organizations.

There are six other candidates running for the open Position 4 at the Port of Seattle: Preeti Shridhar, Richard Pope, Brooks Salazar, Ray S. Armitstead, Fernando Martinez, and Ken Rogers. Shridhar has distinguished herself as a public affairs administrator for the City of Renton and earned the endorsement of The Stranger newspaper.

Campaign Information

Port Commissioner, Position #1

John McCarthy

John McCarthy photo
John McCarthy is running for Position 1 for Tacoma Port Commissioner against Jim Jensen and Eric Holdman. McCarthy served as a Tacoma Port Commissioner Port Commissioner from 1983 to 1992, and a Pierce County District Court judge for 22 years. While McCarthy is not the most progressive candidate recommended in this guide, it is critical to vote against Jensen, who was outed for pro-Trump, misogynist, and racist tweets. McCarthy is the best choice in this race.

Progressive Endorsements & Supporters

Tacoma - Pierce County Black Collective, Tacoma Firefighters IAFF Local 31, Pierce County Central Labor Council

Campaign Information

Other Ballot Measures

Depending on where you live, you may have the following ballot measures on your ballot.

East Pierce Fire and Rescue Proposition #1

Vote Yes to Lift the Levy Lid

YES
East Pierce Fire and Rescue has put forth Proposition Number 1, a four-year, $1.8 million per year property tax levy. The proposition would maintain the current levy rate of $1.50 per $1000 on your property taxes for the first year. For the subsequent three years, any increase in the annual rate would be capped to no more than 6% of the previous year. East Pierce Fire and Rescue states that the levy will maintain the current level of fire suppression, rescue, and fire prevention services, and hire an additional paramedic unit. Your YES vote will help East Pierce Fire and Rescue maintain its high levels of fire and emergency medical services.

East Pierce Fire and Rescue Proposition #2

Vote Yes on Proposition 2

YES
East Pierce Fire and Rescue has put forth Proposition Number 2, a four year, $160,000 per year EMS levy. The proposition would maintain the current levy rate of $0.50 per $1000 on your property taxes for the first year. For the subsequent three years, any increase in the annual rate would be capped to no more than 6% of the previous year. East Pierce Fire and Rescue states that the levy will help maintain and operate emergency medical aid vehicles. Your YES vote will help East Pierce Fire and Rescue and emergency medical staff to effectively carry out their duties.

Pierce County Fire Protection District 18 Proposition #1

Vote Yes on Proposition 1

YES
Pierce County Fire Protection District 18 has put forth Proposition Number 1, a four-year, $1.2 million per year renewal of the maintenance and operations expense levy. The levy rate will be between $0.89 and $0.92 per $1000 on your property taxes. Your YES vote will help Fire Protection District 18 continue providing fire and emergency medical service at current levels for the next four years.