This morning the Seattle Times came out with their endorsements in the School Board elections. They, predictably, endorsed Kay Smith-Blum in District 5, Wilson Chin in District 7, and Michael DeBell in District 4.
My perspective on the candidates in District 7 is simple. If you like the way that Mary Bass works on the Board, vote for Betty Patu. If you like the way that Peter Maier works on the Board, vote for Wilson Chin.
The Seattle Times clearly does not like the way that Mary Bass works on the Board. They have endorsed Kay Smith-Blum instead. Not liking Director Bass' style, they don't like Ms Patu's either.
Regardless of their choices, the reasoning that the Times provides strikes me as weird. They like Ms Smith-Blum in large part for her refreshing energy and her track record of raising money - as if this were a charity board rather than the legislative body of a government entity. I never hear them mention it as a qualification for the state legislature, City Council, or The Congress. The Times says that Mary Bass doesn't deserve a third term because the challenges of her district remain high. Was Mary supposed to turn the Central Area into Wedgwood in eight years? Do they think that Kay Smith-Blum can do that? In addition, the Muni League has lowered Director Bass' rating. The Times has no other reasons than that for tossing out an eight-year incumbent?
They like Wilson Chin for their projection that he will build consensus. They acknowledge that he doesn't know much about the District but that he's learning fast. They contend that Ms Patu knows even less about the District and lacks energy.