There has been an outpouring of anger over the Seattle City Council’s decision to vote in favor of a $100,000 pay hike for the already highest paid City-employed executive. This would have passed quietly and smoothly if we did not have a voice on the council representing working people. Fortunately, as a socialist representative, I was able to openly challenge exorbitant executive pay and publicize this issue.
On June 4th, the Education and Governance Committee of the Seattle City Council cast the first vote in favor of the $100,000 raise. I was the sole vote against the pay hike. This vote happened two days after the Council unanimously passed $15/hour with the pledge to fight income inequality. My remarks can be read here, and you can watch the the Committee deliberation and vote here:
On June 16th, the Full Council came together to vote to confirm the $100,000 raise. Again, I voted no. Watch the excellent public comments against exorbitant CEO pay, the ensuing Council debate, and see how the other representatives voted:
These two votes serve as further proof that $15 happened because of the pressure from the movement on the ground. They show that we need to continue building more powerful mass movements that can challenge corporate politics. We cannot rely on establishment politicians to change the status quo.