McGinn has ran on this, leading thousands to support him in his bid to be Mayor of Seattle.
Much of McGinn's battle with Joe Mallahan has centered on this issue. Mallahan has been saying that the issue has been decided, and he would use his project management skills to ensure that the project would complete on time and under budget. Now it appears Mike McGinn is taking Joe Mallahan's position.
I guess the question I have for McGinn is: Will he be voting for Mallahan?
It does appear, by McGinn's change of positions, that Mallahan is right.
How many anti-tunnel folks will keep supporting McGinn?
How many undecided voters will view this announcement as an endorsement of Joe Mallahan?
How many people that would otherwise support McGinn, if not for his opposition to the tunnel?
Joe Mallahan released this statement this afternoon:
I am pleased the City Council reaffirmed its commitment to move forward on the Alaskan Way Viaduct replacement project. The worst thing we could do for our economy is undo a decision that took eight years to make. If we don't move forward on replacing the viaduct, our economy and our traffic will come to a screeching halt.
"My opponent has spent the last eight months campaigning on one issue - stopping the tunnel and our economy from moving forward.
"Now he's changing his position because he's seen the poll numbers and is fighting for his political life. My opponent has shown he is willing to say whatever voters want to hear. His flip-flopping clearly demonstrates that voters have a choice between a political opportunist or a principled leader and effective manager, like myself, to lead this city and our economy forward."
So, the Washington State Governor and Legislature, the current Mayor and City Council of Seattle, have committed to the agreement to replace the Alaskan Way Viaduct with a deep bore tunnel. For eight months Mike McGinn has said that he will fight the project, until today.
McGinn's entire statement:.
Today, the City Council authorized Mayor Greg Nickels to sign an intergovernmental agreement with the State of Washington committing Seattle to the tunnel plan.
I disagree with the decision. I disagree with the timing.
But the reality is Mayor Nickels and the Council have entered into an agreement, and the City is now committed to the tunnel plan.
If I'm elected Mayor, although I disagree with this decision, it will be my job to uphold and execute this agreement. It is not the Mayor's job to withhold the cooperation of city government in executing this agreement.
I will, however, continue to ask tough questions:
• We don't know how much it's actually going to cost.
• If it ends up costing more than the current budget allows, there is serious disagreement between Seattle and the State over who will pay the cost overruns.
• Where will the money come from, and who will bear the burden? Will we have to cut police, fire, library, or services for the poor?
I will not stop asking the tough questions nor will I ever stop standing up for Seattle's interests in this process.
I'm worried the people that want the tunnel have a champagne appetite and the City has a beer budget. The question is who will end up paying the tab.
There is a clear choice in this election.
My opponent has refused to ask any hard questions about the tunnel.
In fact, when asked about the Legislature passing the cost overrun amendment, he said:
"If I were mayor, rather than taking potshots at Democratic leadership who put that (amendment) on, I'd express disappointment and say, "OK, we can live with this."
Seattle cannot live with paying the cost overruns on the tunnel.
Mike McGinn says he would uphold the plans for a tunnel if elected, despite opposition
Have a great day,
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