Self-proclaimed socialist and Seattle City Councilmember Kshama Sawant held a campaign rally last Saturday. As could be expected, the rally featured plenty of fiery rhetoric and self-aggrandizement. No less than 11 speakers—including rookie State Senator Pramila Jayapal (D-37, Southeast Seattle), Service Employees International Union 775 head David Rolf, and writer and journalist Chris Hedges—had a turn to address the audience before Sawant finally spoke.
According to Publicola, at one point during the rally, Sawant’s supporters attempted to solicit donations from the audience and awkwardness ensued. Here’s what happened:
“But things got a little weird—and somewhat uncomfortable—when Nicole Grant of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers spent over 20 minutes on the mic trying to extract donations from the reluctant audience. Contributions were few and far between, and people quickly got antsy. A fair number sneaked out while some in the back of the venue moaned for Sawant (“Kshama!“) to come out already. “This is a chance to make a financial gift that changes the very system of inequality itself,” Grant proclaimed as the crowd cooled themselves with makeshift fans.”
That’s right, the Sawantistas believe that giving her campaign cash is so important, it’s striking a blow against “the very system of inequality itself.”
When Sawant finally took the stage, she bashed her challengers as “corporate politicians” and claimed that the “corporate elite in Seattle have become used to owning politics.” That slight to her fellow city council members came right after she took credit for the “accomplishments” of the Seattle City Council, including the $15 minimum wage and the creation of Indigenous Peoples Day.
Sawant then said something very sawant-ish. She claimed, “The elite is interested in one thing and one thing only: They want this movement to stop.” Of course, the “movement” she was referring to is her own. Why, according to Sawant, does “the elite” want to stop her “movement.” Because she, Kshama Sawant, represents “the aspirations of tens of thousands of people.”
Really, it’s all kind of like the time she called her arrest at a protest in SeaTac over Alaska Airline’s push to block the $15 minimum wage a “life-threatening” situation then compared herself to “all the best activists in the past and in the present.”
Ladies and gentlemen, Seattle’s socialist diva.