After most expensive council primary in Seattle history, Grant seeks lift of spending limits

The Jon Grant campaign for Seattle City Council Position 8 is petitioning the Seattle Ethics and Elections Commission to lift the campaign’s spending cap, since our opponent, Teresa Mosqueda, and independent expenditures on her behalf, are spending well over the limit.

Mosqueda’s campaign and independent expenditures spending on her behalf, have
significantly exceeded the $300,000 spending cap imposed by the Democracy Voucher program. The 2017 primary was the most expensive in Seattle City Council history, with nearly $800,000 spent by top candidates and related independent expenditures. Most of that money was in support of the Mosqueda campaign, with expenditures exceeding $400,000.

The Grant campaign is filing this petition, because under SEEC code, the $300,000 spending cap can be lifted if a campaign demonstrates that an opponent exceeded the limit and “that the excess is material.” Since spending for Mosqueda totals more than $400,000, the Grant campaign believes it is safe to say that excess is material.

“I think Seattleites are tired of watching our elections getting bought. We fully expect another half million dollars to get spent against us in the general election, and I’m proud of the broad grassroots community support we’ve already received. We will win this on people power, not big money.”

Instead of relying on independent expenditure funding, the Grant campaign has focused on fundraising through the Democracy Voucher program. Ninety percent of all donations to the campaign are Democracy Vouchers, and this week Grant became the first candidate in any race to collect the maximum number of Democracy Vouchers, reaching $300,000 raised from the program. Grant has more than 4,000 unique donors, the most of any candidate in any race, demonstrating broad community support.

Once the campaign spending cap is lifted, the campaign will shift to raising real-dollar donations to remain competitive against an opponent backed by large independent expenditure groups.