What newcomers think about Seattle politics | KUOW News and Information

What newcomers think about Seattle politics

Jul 26, 2017

Seattle is growing crazy fast — roughly 56 people moved here every day last year. 

We've heard what some Seattelites think of newcomers (ahem). But what do newcomers think about Seattle? Especially during an election season when we're our least "Seattle nice."

We asked. Here are some of the responses we received:

"I moved here in late March from Tacoma to be closer to yoga teaching opportunities. As progressive as Seattle claims to be, there is this regressive desire to 'keep Seattle.' People seem to not be able to let go of the Seattle of the past but claim to want to embrace the future. In Tacoma, things moved slower and change is almost unnoticeable in comparison to Seattle which is why I moved here. But I was not expecting 'progressives' to be so against progress. From what I have experienced, Seattleites are more interested in appearing progressive than in making the difficult sacrifices in order to achieve progress." —Michael Brown

Join the discussion: Tell a newcomer something they might not know about an issue that matters to you this election season. Use #HeyNewSeattleite on Twitter or Facebook to share your constructive and neighborly two cents. Or email us

I'm still processing this vote-by-mail thing.

"I moved here from New York City last week. My wife started work as a rabbi at a local synagogue and I'm a high school science teacher. I'm still processing this vote-by-mail thing. I'm used to the gathering of the town or precinct to vote on a specific day at a communal place. Right now, the mayor's race is about all I have the bandwidth for, despite getting the voluminous voter guide in the mail the day we moved in." —Jeremy Rose

I'm talked to as if I had voted for Donald Trump.

"I moved to Seattle in early 2016 from Dallas. Like many, Amazon brought me to the area when my boyfriend accepted a job offer. I've long considered myself a Democrat, but I feel like a total outsider with politics in Seattle, and I sometimes feel like there is animosity towards moderate, traditional Democrats. One issue that has struck me particularly hard is the willingness to increase taxation. I'll be the first to support a tax increase for quality of life, education and health, but my expectation is that if taxes are to be increased, our government must show that they are managing existing funds well and should provide a detailed account of how the new revenues will be used. It's government accountability and that's not a Republican or Democratic issue. When I raise that topic, it's usually met with progressive disdain and I'm talked to as if I had voted for Donald Trump." —Brandon Gonzalez

Overall I have been blown away...

"I moved to Seattle about a year ago from Dallas, Texas, in search of a more active and progressive city. I currently work in the affordable housing sector and encounter the challenges Seattle faces in terms of affordability. Overall I have been blown away by Seattle. The city is full of natural beauty and provides residents with access to opportunities that very few cities have. One clear example is the ability to drive 20 minutes to a nearby forest or mountain and feel that you are thousands of miles away from the busy streets of a major city. Seattle provides a rare opportunity for individuals who want to be in a fast-paced market but also appreciate the outdoors."  —Shkelqim Kelmendi

The nation is watching Seattle and Washington state.

"I moved here with my husband five and a half months ago from Chicago. We needed to have less gray and concrete and more trees, fresh air to breath, and mountains and ocean. We moved so we could potentially get higher salaries. Another reason that I moved was to live in a city and a state that is actually moving forward in politics and government (Illinois budget stall is a huge issue). The nation is watching Seattle and Washington state. This area must keep pushing forward (such as $15 minimum wage; pushing back on the 'Muslim ban,' election vouchers) to show that a diverse urban city and beautiful and blue (though quite red in some areas) CAN and SHOULD be pushing for equitable legislation." —Cassandra Dara-Abrams

"I work in a laboratory at Fred Hutch in HIV vaccination research. I moved to Columbia City with my wife and children last October from Florida. Seattle is as far as you can get from Jacksonville: physically, politically, socio-economically, meteorologically, and almost any other 'y' that you can imagine. In Jacksonville, elections usually come down to moderate conservatives versus borderline fascists (see: Florida governor's race between Rick Scott and Charlie Crist). In Seattle, it seems the elections come down to moderate liberals versus borderline communists. It's a complete 180."  —Richard David Smith III

Responses have been edited for length.