Announcing CAPE - The Civic Alliance for a Progressive Economy

CAPE Swoops in to Save the Day from
Corporate Takeover of City Council


SEATTLE –  With deep-pocketed business interest groups preparing a hostile takeover of the Seattle City Council, CAPE is swooping in to fight back. CAPE is the Civic Alliance for a Progressive Economy and will take the fight to wealthy business interests with its greatest superpower: people power.

People for Seattle, a generic-sounding, pro-business PAC raised more than $160,000 dollars in less than four weeks from an assortment of self-interested millionaires, billionaires, and real estate developers. Meanwhile, CASE, the Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce’s PAC, has raised more than $800,000. These groups are amassing mountains of cash to inundate voters with glossy mailers, TV, and digital ads to promote candidates that might sound good on the issues Seattle voters care most about – like good jobs, affordability, livability, and equity – but will ultimately be in the pocket of the rich and powerful.

CAPE will work to influence the core economic narrative of our region and elect candidates who understand that when workers have money to spend, and their basic needs met, our economy thrives. CAPE was formed by leaders at Working Washington, OneAmerica Votes, and Civic Action to  support candidates and causes that align with CAPE’s four key issue areas (see about CAPE section below).

"Seattle is at a crossroads – are we going to continue doing everything we can locally to raise standards for workers and grow our economy from the middle out, or are we going to let big corporate interests steer us towards austerity and a return to the Gilded Age,” said Rachel Lauter, Executive Director of Working Washington. "CAPE will let voters know which candidates are running to represent us and which candidates are running to represent the wealthy and the elite."

“We all have a stake in a Seattle that lower-income workers and people of color can afford to live in, that is a welcoming place that rejects discrimination in all its forms, and that treats all workers and caregivers with dignity and respect. Economic justice is an immigrant issue. Immigrants are pushed out of affordable areas, forced to work low-wage jobs, and face discrimination and injustice on the streets and in their worksites,” said Rich Stolz,Chief Executive Officer of OneAmerica Votes. “We look forward to seeing how candidates respond.”

“The most pro-business economic policies are those that ensure that the middle and working-class families thrive. Washington state ranks at or near the top of all rankings of best state economies in no small part because we have the most progressive policies in the country,” said Nick Hanauer, Founder of Civic Action and successful business leader and entrepreneur. “This effort we've put together will help voters tell the difference between candidates who are straight-up trickle-downers and those who side with working people and growing the economy for everyone.”

CAPE will be conducting a candidate review process over the coming weeks and plans to issue ratings on a 0- to 5-star scale by the end of June. Some 5-star candidates may also receive financial contributions from CAPE. CAPE will hold a candidate forum in September for the general election.

In addition to Seattle, CAPE will be inviting candidates from other local races in Washington to participate as well. And any candidate is welcome to complete the questionnaire.

Visit or contact Josh Fogt with CAPE at or 206-330-6659 for more information.


CAPE is the Civic Alliance for a Progressive Economy. We are a political organization representing the diverse interests of poor, working class, and middle class people in Washington. Founded by Working Washington, OneAmerica Votes, and Civic Action, CAPE will fight for an inclusive economy that puts the interests of no-, low- and middle-income people – including people of color, immigrants and refugees, women and children, and LGBTQ communities – before the interests of big business and the wealthy. We stand in direct opposition to the narrative of trickle-down economics promoted by the corporate interests that have long dominated our politics and policy making. CAPE is committed to creating livable, affordable, and inclusive communities throughout our state.

CAPE supports candidates who demonstrate a strong commitment to improving the quality of life and economic opportunities enjoyed by all, and backs any policy that will do the same. But we feel especially strongly about four core issues:

We all do better when we all do better. Economic growth and prosperity are created when workers have more money in their pockets because they will spend it in their local economies on things like food and clothing for their families. CAPE will support candidates that support workers’ interests.   

We live in a racially, ethnically, and economically diverse part of the country, and we must create more educational and economic opportunities for all people in our communities – especially for immigrants and refugees, people of color, women, and LGBTQ communities that have historically been denied access to opportunities for advancement. CAPE will support candidates with a strong vision for racial and economic justice and clear ideas for how to pursue that vision through policy change.

We are facing an affordability crisis in many communities across our state. The rent is too damn high and it’s forcing low-wage workers and many small businesses out of the communities they call home. CAPE will support candidates who support increasing revenue and expenditures on affordable housing, as well as policies that increase housing affordability at all levels of income, and prevent displacement of people and small businesses.

In addition to affordable housing, other basic needs like access to high quality childcare, education, and healthcare are increasingly out of reach for many households in Washington. CAPE will support candidates that bring new energy and ideas to funding childcare, public education, and healthcare for everyone in our communities.  

Josh Fogt