By Jerry Cornfield
State Sen. Ed Murray, D-Seattle, is getting ready to jump into the 2013 contest for Seattle mayor.
At 1 p.m. today he intends to take his first stride to a full-fledged campaign by establishing an exploratory committee. He’s called a news conference at Sole Repair Shop on Pike Street in Seattle.
Murray made his intentions clear to Andrew Garber of the Seattle Times when he said:
“I’m not going to sit here and tease people. I’m not going to play that game. It’s my intention to run.”
Murray is the third big name in the race. Mayor Mike McGinn is expected to seek a second term and Seattle City Councilmemeber Tim Burgess declared his candidacy a few days ago.
Murray, who is coming off a huge political win with enactment of the gay marriage law, did acknowledge he may be hindered and even thwarted from running should the state Legislature not wrap up on schedule April 28.
He told Garber:
“If we’re going through June and July, then, at that point, I’d have to re-evaluate. It would be very difficult for me to see how I could run,” he said.
The idea of a special session is not too far-fetched. They did earlier this year and 2013 promises to be almost as challenging. The projected budget deficit is large and the Democrats’ control of the state Senate is tenuous.
Murray is the newly-minted Senate Majority Leader. His caucus holds a numeric advantage of 26-23 but two conservative members are primed to unite with Republicans on budget and policy matters. Murray’s ability to maintain a philosophical majority throughout the session will be severely tested.