Kshama Sawant has been a tireless advocate for working people. After rising to prominence as an Occupy activist, she used her 2012 campaign as a megaphone to air the grievances of those who are ignored by the current system.
Sawant won a historic 29% with over 20,000 votes against Democratic Washington State House Speaker Frank Chopp: the strongest vote for an independent left-wing candidate in the U.S. in 2012 and the highest vote for a socialist in decades.
The grassroots and activist nature of the 2012 campaign was illustrated when, during the campaign, she lost her job in an act of political discrimination. Rather than silently accepting this, Sawant and Socialist Alternative immediately organized a defense campaign that succeeded in compelling her employer to rehire her.
Now running for Seattle City Council, Sawant is building on the momentum from last year. The campaign kickoff party was attended by 100 people, and $2000 was raised! The campaign has received coverage in the Seattle Times, Seattle P-I, The Stranger, and in numerous neighborhood papers and blogs. Sawant was also interviewed on Seattles KEXP radio station, one of the most popular stations in the city.
To qualify for the ballot, a candidate must pay $1,200 – one percent of the city councilors $120,000 yearly salary! – or collect 1,200 valid signatures of registered Seattle voters. The Sawant campaign has already collected 1,100 signatures and aims to collect over 2,000.
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