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McConnell Warns Of 'Scary Prospect' If GOP Loses Senate Control In Midterms    

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Updated at 8:52 p.m . ET Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has a message for Republican voters who are celebrating the confirmation of Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh: Get to the polls in November if you want more conservatives sitting on judicial benches. "Lose the Senate, and the project of confirming judges is over for the last two years of President Trump," McConnell said in an interview with NPR in his Capitol Hill office. "That, I think, is a scary prospect to the people who like what we've been doing on the judge project and I hope will help us hold on to our majority." McConnell said the raucous, sometimes aggressive fight over Kavanaugh's nomination came at a perfect time for Republicans. Polls showed GOP voter enthusiasm slumping over the summer as energy for Democrats spiked. All that turned around when Republicans grew frustrated with the protracted battle over Kavanaugh. The Kentucky Republican said it awakened them to the Supreme Court cause — an issue that

          

Slog PM: Three-Alarm Fire in Ballard; Fancy Anti-Sawant Sign in D3; Ballard P-Patch Wants Some of That Sweet, Sweet Soda Tax Money   

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by Chase Burns
Seattle homeowners are out here adopting Trumpian rhetoric to kick out a council member building a movement for rent control.
Cute! A Seattle homeowner put up this pretty sign to encourage people to vote out a council member building a movement for rent control! Anonymous

A friend of Stranger reporter Eli Sanders spotted this sign while walking through District 3: For more reporting on Council Member Sawant and her opponent, Egan Orion, read Lester Black and Rich Smith here and here.

McConnell bucks Trump: Today, Trump announced he would pull US troops from northern Syria. The announcement, sponsored by Trump's "unmatched wisdom," brought chaos to Washington.


Republicans and Democrats sorta united in their criticism against Trump: McConnell said the move would cause "a precipitous withdrawal of US forces from Syria [that] would only benefit Russia, Iran, and the Assad regime." He continued: "Major new conflict between Turkey and our partners in Syria would seriously risk damaging Turkey's ties to the United States and causing greater isolation for Turkey on the world stage." TRUMP, BABY, WHY ARE YOU DAMAGING ALL YOUR RELATIONSHIPS? (Is it because Putin's got that pee-pee tape?)

Warren is going off about Facebook and Trump: In related news, Washington state is going after Facebook again for failing to disclose details about the local political ads it sells in the state.

The Impossible Burger is the "Lizzo of the plant-based food market": Impossible Burger, meet the Impossible Comparison.

These retired gardeners aren't fucking around: The Ballard P-Patch is so popular that it has a two-year waiting list. Now, the garden is threatened by potential redevelopment and must raise funds to stay on the property: up to $2 million, reports the Seattle Times. They've raised approximately $49,000, which isn't close to $2 million. But the people are not afraid. They think they can get some of that $3 million the soda tax raised to save their P-Patch. (Unlikely.) I especially liked this passage from the Times report:

Another volunteer is Cindy Krueger, 67, who put in years at everything from a firm that managed projects, to another that ran creative productions and events. It’s a background that means she’s not intimidated by big PDF documents or bureaucracies.

“Back in 1985, we did the first Microsoft meeting, 85 people at the Red Lion in Bellevue. Steve Ballmer with a slide projector – ‘This is Windows,’ ” she remembers.

Now saving the P-Patch has become her full-time job.

Three-alarm fire in Ballard: A major fire broke out in the heart of Ballard on the corner of Northwest Market Street and 24th Ave this afternoon, with firefighters coming from around the city to battle the blaze for over three hours. A total of ~150 firefighters fought the fire, getting it under control by about 3:30 p.m. Several businesses—La Isla, Pho Big Bowl, Supercuts, Kitchen N Things, and Octo Designs & Jewelers—were severely impacted by the fire. "All five businesses were expected to be a total loss," a Seattle Fire Department spokesperson originally told the Seattle Times, although now it looks like Pho Big Bowl may be somewhat saved. Crews are expected to stay at the site overnight to make sure the fire doesn't start up again. The Times has more coverage of the fire here.

One of The Stranger's Tech-Savvy/At-Risk Youth lives near the fire and sent us an update: "All the hydrants in use have stirred gunk up in the water main; this is what's coming out of my faucet right now." A pic:

Gross.
Gross. Grant Hendrix

Ew: Sorry, Grant!

Trump must reveal his tax returns: A federal judge has rejected Trump's attempt to prevent Manhattan state prosecutors from reviewing his tax returns. His returns are still protected, however, for now. "His lawyers quickly appealed to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan, which agreed to temporarily delay enforcement of the subpoena while it considers arguments in the case," writes the New York Times.

Rainbow crosswalks are hitting the nation: But the federal government is asking cities to get rid of them, suggesting they're unsafe. A letter sent by the Federal Highway Administration reads that the gay-ass crosswalks diminish "the contrast between the white lines and the pavement, potentially decreasing the effectiveness of the crosswalk markings and the safety of pedestrian traffic.” But urbanists are saying this is bullshit. (Mr. Pence, I think you have bigger things to worry about right now??)

The youth may not rock the vote this fall: But maybe the techies will.

Landlords are worried they may have to pay the price now that WeWork is crashing: Two London landlords told the Financial Times they're creating backup plans for when the company goes down in smoke. (Too soon?) "It would not be prudent for us to do anything [new] with them until we see how the new management will operate," said one landlord. Meanwhile, we over here in Stranger World Headquarters are patiently eating popcorn and waiting to see what will happen with the half-empty mega WeWork office being built next door to us.

This gender reveal video is really funny: My gender is also an intangible black balloon. (Black Balloon, by the way, is the name of a movie that stars Toni Collette.)


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Caffe Vita Owners Say They'll "Do Better;" Baristas Want to Know What That Means   

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This controversy is still brewing. by Rich Smith
Still brewin
Still brewin' RS

In a statement published on Instagram last Friday, Caffe Vita owners Liz and Mike McConnell apologized for arguing in an email to employees that "giving away free food and drink without comprehensive services enables homelessness."

Following a protest last Wednesday and widespread criticism on social media, the owners claimed to be reviewing community feedback and said they can "do better." They also pledged to "remain committed to diversity and inclusion and...dedicated to proactively lifting up underrepresented community members, including our neighbors experiencing homelessness."

A group called Coffee Riot, which helped organize the protest after the company allegedly fired employees for giving away old pastries and coffee to homeless people, commended the McConnells for the work they've done "for the houseless community" and offered to "facilitate a dialogue regarding a proper and holistic response."

The group said they want to see "more concrete language" from the McConnells regarding the company's pastry waste policy, and added that Vita should be sure to include current and former employees in the conversation, as well as people experiencing homelessness and other Capitol Hill neighbors. They also expressed concern "with the way Vita handled the employees that were fired or resigned," citing a "lack of transparency in these incidents."

In a follow-up email to The Stranger, Liz McConnell admitted the employee handbook "did not list protocols for waste coffee or pastry," and said the company will develop a "clear and consistent policy" around those items "with the goal of making sure edible food and drink are rescued and given to those who need it."

McConnell added that she disagrees with the idea that giving food to homeless people enables homelessness. "I understand that the totality of those words and actions conflated these things, and fueled the misunderstanding that homelessness is a choice or a personal failing. I can’t tell you how much I regret that," she wrote. "The crux of the problem is a massive lack of affordable housing combined with a lack of funding for services and supports unique to each individual's needs."

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Sen. Gillibrand: Pres. Trump needs to take responsibility for the 'hate' and 'racism he's inspired'   

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In the wake of the mass shootings in El Paso and Daytona this weekend, Senator and presidential candidate Kirsten Gillibrand says that Republicans need to stand up to Mitch McConnell and demand to go back to Washington to vote on gun reform bills.

          

Mitch McConnell’s campaign brags to supporters about how his wife corruptly favored Kentucky developers   

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Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and his wife, Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao, have come under fire for using their official positions to help one another. Chiefly, recent reporting suggests that Chao vastly favored officials from McConnell’s home state when taking grant meetings, and that McConnell’s staff sets up these meetings by telling Chao which […]

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