Murray announces he’s ending his re-election bid at Alki Bathhouse. Photo by Sara Bernard

Murray announces he’s ending his re-election bid at Alki Bathhouse. Photo by Sara Bernard

Murray Drops Re-Election Bid, Will Finish Term

The move comes more than a month after sex abuse allegations against the mayor emerged.

This morning, Seattle Mayor Ed Murray announced that he is ending his campaign for re-election. The news comes a little more than a month after The Seattle Times revealed that Murray is being sued for allegedly paying a minor for sex and also raping him. Three other men have made similar allegations.

The mood was somber, like a funeral. In the minutes before Murray arrived, people stood around on stage and in the audience. There were lots of pursed lips, tense whispers, and clasped hands.

Then Murray walked in, and the room erupted into applause for much longer than usual for a mayoral announcement. Joined by staff, supporters, labor and business representatives and councilmembers Sally Bagshaw and Tim Burgess at Alki Bathhouse in West Seattle, where he grew up, Murray read prepared comments via teleprompter. The longtime state legislator described at length his many accomplishments as representative, senator and most recently the executive of Seattle, including the passage of marriage equality and anti-discrimination protections for LGBT Washingtonians.

“But this campaign for mayor must be about the future of our city,” said Murray. “The mayor’s race must be focused on [city] issues, not on a scandal, which it would remain focused on if I remained in this race.” Consequently, he’s dropping out of his reelection bid:

“I am announcing that I am withdrawing as a candidate for mayor,” he said.

Murray reiterated that he is innocent of the charges against him. He also thanked his husband, Michael Shiosaki, who he said has not received enough credit for how he’s handled the role of First Gentleman, and gave a long list of thanks to the people who have supported him throughout his career.

“As a poor kid from Alki, being mayor of this city has been the opportunity of a lifetime,” said Murray. “I am proud to have been part of some remarkable achievements that, for my entire life, people told me would never happen – from the civil rights bill to the ring I wear on my finger – and I plan to continue fighting for equity long after I am mayor. To the people of Seattle, thank you for the opportunity to serve you and this great city for more than two decades.”

Murray, who is ethnically Irish, concluded with a quotation from former Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan: “To be Irish is to know that the world will break your heart. We thought we had a little more time.”

cjaywork@seattleweekly.com

This post has been edited.


Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing editor@seattleweekly.com.

More in News & Comment

Photo via Pexels
King County residents needed for first respiratory study using Apple watches

UW study to help find if devices can detect early warning signs of acute respiratory infections, such as COVID-19 and flu.

Puget Sound renters will need housing assistance
Puget Sound renters will need housing assistance

Nonprofits, activists are expecting greater need as workers are laid off.

Photo courtesy of Johnson and Johnson (jnj.com)
Johnson & Johnson vaccine halted in Washington over side effect

Following federal guidance, Washington health care providers are temporarily pausing Johnson &… Continue reading

File Photo
High court ruling spurs effort to retool state’s drug laws

Meanwhile, the Blake decision has gotten people out jail, charges dismissed and possibly clemency for some.

The Monroe Correctional Complex on April 9, 2020. (Sound Publishing file photo)
Formerly incarcerated people regain right to vote in Washington

Rights restored immediately upon release.

Spring Chinook Salmon. Photo courtesy Michael Humling, US Fish & Wildlife Service
Salmon update: King County wants cleaner water, more habitat

Salmon and orcas are in the spotlight once again as King County… Continue reading

Guns seized during April 7 arrests (photo credit: Dept. of Justice)
More than 20 arrested across the Puget Sound in drug distribution conspiracy

DOJ says law enforcement agencies seized over 70 guns and hundreds of thousands in cash.

T
Sheriff’s office wants help identifying Green River killer victim

Staff reports In 2003, Gary Ridgway, Washington’s notorious Green River killer, pleaded… Continue reading

King County Prosecutor Dan Satterberg. File photo
King County needs more lawyers to attack backlog of cases

6,107 open cases is double the normal amount for King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office.

Public Health – Seattle & King County staff administering COVID-19 vaccine to a local emergency responder. COURTESY PHOTO, Public Health-Seattle & King County
Starting April 15, everyone 16 and older is eligible for a vaccine

Gov. Inslee said an expected increase in vaccine supply enables the state to open eligibility.

A CVS pharmacist prepares a COVID-19 vaccine at Village Green Retirement Campus in Federal Way on Jan. 26. Olivia Sullivan/Sound Publishing
Phase Finder for vaccine eligibility to be eliminated March 31

Eligibility verification via Phase Finder no longer required for appointments, vaccinations beginning this week.

Courtesy photo
Issaquah School District settles negligence lawsuit for $4.25 million

The lawsuit alleged the district covered for a now-convicted child molester while he was a teacher.