SEATTLE — Seattle City Councilmember Kshama Sawant has filed for re-election with a formal announcement scheduled for next week.

The committee VOTE SAWANT 2019 registered Friday with the Seattle City Ethics and Elections Commission, and so far the group has recorded $70 in contributions

Chris Gray, who is listed in the documents as the campaign director, said the move was made, because the incumbent council member “started to receive unsolicited donations from people excited about her re-election.” Gray said that Sawant is running again, because there continues to be a “crisis of affordability, and while there has been lots of progress, there is also lots of work to do in the future.”

Sawant took office in 2014 and is seeking another four-year term in District 3, which covers Capitol Hill, Madrona, the Central District, Leschi, and Madison Park. 

Sawant has been a polarizing figure in the city’s recent political history, running as a self-described socialist. She helped push through changes in her first term, such as the $15 an hour minimum wage, and became a flash point in the city’s debate to repeal the head tax last year.

Sawant already has three challengers: marijuana business owner Logan Bowers, businessman Beto Yarce, and community activist Pat Murakami, who recently ran against Seattle City Councilmember Lorena Gonzalez in her 2017 re-election campaign.

Just one other Seattle council member has filed for re-election so far – Mike O’Brien, who represents District 6. Councilmembers Debora Juarez and Lisa Herbold’s seats are also up for re-election, and although challengers have already registered for both campaigns, neither Herbold or Juarez have announced plans to run again.

Council President Bruce Harrell and Councilmembers Sally Bagshaw and Rob Johnson have each announced they are not running for re-election.

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