Seattle Courant

Drago Launches Campaign to Unseat Nickels

Jan Drago announcing candidacy for mayor. May 26, 2009
By Keith Vance
May 26, 2009 06:05PM

“It isn’t whether we agree or disagree, but how you get things done,” Drago said.

Rather than the top-down managerial style often employed by Nickels, Drago said she will collaborate, coordinate and communicate with community leaders, politicians and the people of Seattle before she makes decisions. She said Nickels has never done that, and not doing so has hurt Seattle.

“We’re worried Seattle has lost its momentum,” Drago, 69, said outside the Seattle Art Museum near the Hammering Man sculpture. “I don’t think any of us can remember a time when Seattle was less respected. When Seattle had less influence in the Legislature, or in the region.”

“What we need is a trusted leader,” Drago said. “The people of Seattle want change.”

However, the policy differences between Drago – currently the chair of the transportation committee – and Nickels are virtually nonexistent. They both support the deep-bore tunnel plan for the Alaskan Way Viaduct and improving Allentown (also known as South Lake Union) by pushing forward with the controversial $200 million Mercer Mess transportation/beautification project.

But Drago said she will be different from Nickels. It’s time to hit the “reset button,” she said. To “get things done.”

If elected mayor Drago said she will improve education, reduce crime, create jobs, spur small business growth, reduce congestion and improve transportation.

Drago was endorsed by Councilmember Bruce Harrell who stood by her side during her announcement speech. Council President Richard Conlin was present in the audience but has not endorsed any candidates.

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No Money For Mercer Mess, Who Knew? Drago works with Nickels to hoodwink Seattle City Council.
Seattle City Council Reverses Decision to Release Mercer Mess Money.
All Courant stories involving Drago.

Jan Drago and Bruce Harrell as Drago announces candidacy for mayor. May 26, 2009
Council President Richard Conlin watching Drago announce candidacy for mayor. May 26, 2009