As the mayor surely likes to say, you can never be too thin or - when it comes to campaign donations - too rich. Big Greg's war chest hit $200,000 on the 4th of July - with just a mere 17 months left till the Nov. 3, 2009 general election. Based on his history of arm twisting, he could top out close to three-quarters of a million by next fall.
His campaign has been 24/7 since his 2001 election. He raised $600,000 that run and $500,000 for the 2005 campaign, considerably more than needed to defeat no-name opponents. This time out he could face council member Richard Conlin, among others, a more formidable foe. Thus the money drive is already in second gear.
Who's giving early and often? Developers and corporations, in particular. Among recent sizeable donations were those from Martin Selig of Selig Real Estate, Doug Howe of Touchstone Corp., Matt Griffin of the Pine Street Group, Matt Howland of Howland Homes, The Vance Corp., Safeco, GGLO architects, and Puget Sound Pipe & Supply; each gave the maximum $700 allowable. Tom Hennessy of Nuprecon construction/demolition, his wife, and his company, each gave $700, for a $2,100 total.
So far, Nickels officially has one opponent, community activist David Wolbeck. He could be reporting his first dollar any day now.