Time is a flat circle: Remember about this time last year when Trump's biggest donors in Washington teamed up with their buddies in the real estate world to buy our local elections? Well, the usual suspects are up to their same bullshit again. This year, their cleverly named front group independent expenditure, "Families for a Safer King County," has raised more money ($358,000) in less than two months than either candidate for King County Prosecutor has raised in the entire election. They're using $180,000 of that war chest to dump more than 390,000 pieces of mail on King County voters in support of Jim Ferrell, a candidate whose over-reliance on jail will likely increase crime.
When I asked Jim Ferrell about the support from King County's worst rich people, he only said we'll just "have to let democracy play out." I don't know about you, but a bunch of uber-wealthy real estate interests dropping major cash to distort the information voters receive before an election doesn't really seem "democratic" to me.
About that "independent" expenditure: Candidates like Ferrell can't directly communicate with groups like Families for a Safer King County without breaking campaign finance laws, and we're certainly not accusing Ferrell of doing that. HOWEVER, his campaign did make the unusual decision of buying all its paid advertising before ballots went out. Those purchases get reported in public disclosure forms that PACs can access. Most candidates buy a mixture of mailers, TV ads, and digital spots, but Ferrell's disclosure forms, which he filed a week before Families for a Safer King County spent any of its money, show he's only buying TV ads. In what I'm sure is a total coincidence, the "independent" expenditure has made the efficient decision to focus solely on sending out mailers.
In a phone interview, Ferrell also told me that he's doubling down on the TV-only strategy. When next Tuesday's Public Disclosure Commission reports get filed, expect to see another $20,000 on top of the $200,000 Ferrell's campaign has already spent on TV ads. That much spending would put his campaign in the red, but Ferrell assured me he doesn't plan on going into debt. According to Ferrell, he's got another $30,000 in donations coming in that will cover the additional TV buy.
One final piece on the prosecutor's race: The King County GOP recently scrubbed Jim Ferrell's name from its website's list of endorsements, but screenshots live forever. Over the phone, Ferrell denied having anything to do with the scrubbing and said in a statement that he "does not accept endorsements from GOP orgs." After battling accusations of being a closet Republican since May, it seems like the only January 6 apologist Ferrell wants to be associated with is Seattle Police Officers Guild president Mike Solan.
Hmmmm... In yesterday's Slog PM, Rich covered the mystery of where Joe Kent, the MAGA candidate in Washington's 3rd Congressional District, gets his paycheck. Maybe this has something to do with it?
A search on "Advanced Enterprise Solutions," (instead of what 3rd Congressional Dist. candidate Kent filed in federal disclosures as "American Enterprise Solutions") shows his employer received about $270,000 in forgiven PPP loans: https://t.co/fxhcoS6Ryb https://t.co/YkbKUugpvT— Jacob Jones (@jonesdaily) October 26, 2022
The cost of bad candidates: Abortion has slipped as an issue dominating voters' minds in recent polling, but this gaffe from New Jersey resident and Pennsylvania GOP Senate candidate Dr. Oz might change that. This video of his devastatingly honest recitation of the mainstream GOP position on abortion already has nearly 5 million views since last night's debate:
Holy shit: Oz says his abortion position: should be between "a woman, her doctor, and local political leaders" #PASenDebate pic.twitter.com/UDiJvDYHYo— Pat Dennis (@patdennis) October 26, 2022
Maybe direct action will change voters' minds? A group of doctors creatively named "Doctors for Abortion Access" are calling for a nationwide day of action on November 3, including a rally in DC to draw attention to the harms their patients would suffer under a national abortion ban. They're also offering ways for medical professionals who can't travel to DC to get involved locally.
Super PACs spending on abortion messaging: In her latest dispatch for The 19th, Grace Panetta tracks where super PACs are focusing their $6 million in spending on abortion-related ads so far. Washington makes the list as an arena where pro-abortion groups are spending to support federal candidates such as Congresswoman Kim Schrier and Senator Patty Murray.
"A portrait of resilience": I am so tired, deep in my soul, of reading phrases like that as a description of any child, but this is what our failure to end gun violence does. It forces kids like Caitlyne Gonzales, a 10-year-old survivor of the Uvalde school shooting, to become adults so they can demand that people in power start acting their ages. The Washington Post spent the summer profiling Caitlyne, and it's worth your time to read the whole story.
The REAL danger to kids this (and every) Halloween: It's not rainbow-colored fentanyl, despite what the TV news would have you believe.
Halloween is coming which is also the deadliest night of the year for American children under 18...because of drivers. Not because of fictional news stories about drugs in candy. pic.twitter.com/pVUGUqjHeR— Darrell Owens (@IDoTheThinking) October 24, 2022
Cancel culture strikes again!!! University of Florida President Ken Fuchs decided to enforce a decades-old ban on indoor protests after students at my alma mater shut down a forum with incoming university president and current Republican Senator from Nebraska, Ben Sasse. If only these snowflakes would grow some thicker skin and learn how to politely disagree with people who hold opposing political views. Fun bonus UF fact: most of the university's classroom buildings were built in the 1970s with as few windows as possible to minimize disruptions from civil rights and anti-Vietnam War protests.
I'm so proud of you, Philly: In a story that will undoubtedly shock the Mariners faithful, Philadelphia police reported an "incident-free" night after the Phillies won the National League pennant. This from the city that saw its residents eating horse poop out of sheer exuberance when the Eagles won the Super Bowl. I can only imagine the chaos that will erupt outside T-Mobile Park if the Ms ever win a title. [Eds note: I have low expectations.]
Great to have you back, king: Jon Stewart has famously rejected the title of journalist over the years of his satire, but this looks a hell of a lot more like journalism to me than any of the mainstream coverage of last night's Pennsylvania Senate debate.
Arizona is at the epicenter of many key issues. It is also a beacon for those who believe the last election was stolen or fraudulent. In this excerpt, we sat down with Arizona’s attorney general Mark Brnovich. Watch the full interview starting October 28 on @AppleTVPlus pic.twitter.com/CZo5IwqHdG— The Problem With Jon Stewart (@TheProblem) October 25, 2022