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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, June 5, 2015 - Volume 43 Issue 23
Kshama Sawant to host international guests at campaign rally
Section One
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Kshama Sawant to host international guests at campaign rally

by Mike Andrew - SGN Staff Writer

City Council member Kshama Sawant will host guest speakers from Ireland and Greece as well as local leaders in a mass campaign rally scheduled for June 6. The event will be at Town Hall, 1119 8th Avenue, and will begin at 6:30 p.m.

Appearing with Sawant, who is running for reelection in City Council District 3, will be Ruth Coppinger, a member of Ireland's parliament, and Christos Giovanopoulos, a member of Greece's SYRIZA party.

Coppinger will be among the Irish lawmakers who must pass enabling legislation to codify her country's historic referendum vote for marriage equality.

SYRIZA is now the governing party of Greece after winning the January 2015 election. It is a leftist party that has promised to pass marriage equality, but is currently preoccupied with defending its anti-austerity policies against Greece's Western European creditors.

Also joining Sawant for the rally will be:

o Pulitzer prize-winning author Chris Hedges,

o 2012 Green Party Presidential candidate Jill Stein,

o Washington State Senator Pramila Jayapal (D-37),

o Labor leader David Rolf, Presdient of the giant SEIU Local 775NW,

o NAACP leader Sheley Secrest,

o Anti-racism community organizer Dustin Washington.

All of them have endorsed her reelection campaign.

The event will mark the beginning of the 60-day run-up to the August 4 primary election, in which Sawant is seeking to return to the City Council as a representative of the newly created District 3.

District 3 includes Capitol Hill and the Central District, as well as wealthier neighborhoods like Madison Park and Montlake.

Sawant first won election to the Seattle City Council in 2013, surprising political insiders by beating long-time incumbent Richard Conlin.

In her first term she championed a number of causes that have endeared her to local progressives and organized labor, including winning a $15 per hour minimum wage, securing wage increases for City workers, defeating the Seattle Housing Authority's plan to raise rents by 400%, securing millions of additional dollars for human services, creating indigenous People's Day, and passing a Council resolution opposing the TPP free trade treaty.

Sawant and her City Council staff also helped to organize a forum on hate crimes targeting the LGBT community, attended by a standing-room-only crowd of 175 people.

Sawant is opposed by Urban League CEO Pamela Banks, Planned Parenthood staffer Morgan Beach, retired reporter Leon Carter, and former Equal Rights Washington Executive Director Rod Hearne. The top two vote-getters will go on to the general election in November.

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