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A political kind of week

Crosscut week in review: It may still be summer but there was more than a hint of fall politics in the air.

A week with an election brings out the political in Seattle. Then add in a presidential visit, continuing and controversies over transportation issues, and a look at one aspect of the national controversy over for-profit colleges, and it made for a lot of lively stories and comments by readers.

Because of the extended counting period with our form of mail-in balloting, some of the final details about the primary election won't be clear for a while. But Chris Vance weighed in with an analysis of the big picture, "State election results show Republican tide." Sam Sperry followed quickly with his view of the results, "Why Sen. Murray will breeze to a victory."

With President Barack Obama visited to support Sen. Patty Murray's re-election campaign, two of our writers weighed in. Knute Berger wrote a provocative article slamming the unrealistic expectations of some of Obama's former supporters on the left, who now find, to their apparent shock, that he isn't turning the system upside down. Ted Van Dyk, in contrast, suggested that the administration has tried to accomplish too much on behalf of an impractically liberal agenda, but that there's still life in a more down-to-earth liberalism, writing a Wednesday article "The rise and fall of President Romney."

Ronald Holden, who often writes about food and restaurants, brought a very local perspective to national political discussions, covering the concerns of students who have graduated from culinary schools with large debts in his Friday article, "The scandal of $50,000 culinary degrees."

Readers also took to stories about transportation, with articles on those topics leading in the number of comments. Those were both about Seattle issues, "Losing lanes to bikes will produce a jobs exodus," by Peter Philips, and "How the waterfront tunnel will save billions and help biking," by Brian Steinburg.

Even in an election week, our readers and writers don't stick to politics, of course. The most-read new story was Anthony B. Robinson's "A tale of two churches: Mars Hill vs. University Baptist." It looked at a strength of a conservative Christian congregation at a time of weakness for mainline Protestant churches in the University District.

If you are looking around quickly, a couple of the week's other highlights were: "Space Needle: Tower of power," by Berger, and "The ultimate Cascades hike, along the ghost railroad," by Douglas B. MacDonald.

MacDonald's story could be a good starting point for getting outdoors this weekend. Thanks for dropping by.

Joe Copeland is political editor for Crosscut. You can reach him at Joe.Copeland@crosscut.com.


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