The political campaign has begun - for 2009. Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels is officially running for his third term - he takes over as president of the U.S. Conference of Mayors that year, has launched a Re-Elect Greg Nickels 2009 web site, and is already reporting his 2009 donations ($83,000) and expenditures ($25,000) to the Seattle Ethics and Elections Commission. He also has an opponent. "It will probably be a bit over a year before I start actively campaigning," says Seattle activist David Wolbeck, who has officially filed (with no contributions or expenditures reported) and has already had a letter attacking Nickels published in the Times. He calls himself a populist and non-career politician, and tells me "The one and only political role model I've ever had is Jesse Ventura."
But it's David v. Goliath Greg. How does a political nobody avoid getting pulverized by the Nickels machine?
When I start campaigning, I will just go out to places like around Westlake Mall, Seattle City Hall, Pike Place Market, or wherever the people come in droves. I will promote my issues and share my web site (currently don't have one but will) with those I talk to out on the street. I will also be working hard at building relations with the media...There's no doubt in my mind that I can beat Greg Nickels. I've got the goods on him. He's not as clean and pristine as some people seem to think he is. I will expose his faults, some of his extreme positions, and will confront him on the hot air he blows. In other words, I will cut him down to size."