Updated: May 23
The elections this November produced a massive red wave that washed over the country, shocking political pundits, and electing Republicans up and down the ballot to state and local office. Just like the last red wave that followed the election of a Democrat President and a Democrat-controlled Congress, the results in the ensuing Virginia and New Jersey gubernatorial elections captivated the nation.
While Glenn Youngkin’s victory and Jack Ciattarelli’s strong performance have no doubt changed the landscape for the 2022 midterm elections, perhaps the most shocking outcomes occurred 3,000 miles away in Seattle, where voters elected a Republican City Attorney just one year after Joe Biden received 88% of the city's vote.
Although Washington is typically relegated to Blue State status because of its three-decade long run of Democrat Governors and United States Senators, voters of Seattle have demonstrated that even the bluest cities have reached a tipping point and acted to save their city with the election of a Republican prosecutor.
As the pandemic reached its height during the Summer of 2020, unrest ruled the streets of Seattle when protesters seized a six-block area of the city following clashes with police and proclaimed it the Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone (CHOP). The Defund the Police movement took hold of city government and the morale of our law enforcement plummeted, leading to the loss of nearly 250 police officers—20% of the entire city police force. And today, as homeless encampments have invaded our school grounds, with legalized drug use and prostitution just yards from the schools themselves, our families are left wondering what has happened to their beloved city.
This culture of lawlessness has not been restricted to Seattle’s city limits. Despite its size, Washington has the nation’s fifth largest homeless population and King County is breaking gun violence records. The year 2020 brought record gun violence to our community, yet more people were shot and killed in King County during the first nine months of 2021 than all of 2020. Sitting in silence and allowing our community to further devolve is not, and will never be, an option.
I have walked the streets of once bustling family communities in Seattle and I have toured the schools struggling to maintain security for children who are simply trying to return to the classroom following a year of remote learning. As a mom to three school-age boys, it is heartbreaking and as a Washingtonian I am appalled at the erosion of public safety in our community.
As the 2021 elections showed, I am not alone. Common sense prevailed. All because the families of Seattle stood up and said no more.
While most would assume that the local, state, and national Democrat Party leaders would have responded to this voter backlash, there has been no contrition or course correction. Instead, Joe Biden and Nancy Pelosi have double-downed on their radical policies as if they almost read the writing on the wall and consciously decided to get whatever victories they can while they still have majorities.
In 2020, Washington voters split their vote, choosing Democrats for President and Governor, while overwhelmingly reelecting a Republican Secretary of State. With a Democrat Party that is either deaf to the outcry of our communities or simply too stubborn to listen, a red wave is approaching that could dwarf what we experienced in both 1994 and 2010, as voters take matters into their own hands to return sanity to their government.
When that happens, political analysts will undoubtedly remind us of the 2021 Seattle City Attorney’s race foreshadowed Republican victories in Blue districts across the country and the election of a Republican Senator from Washington State.
- Tiffany Smiley