Council appoints Abel Pacheco to fill District 4 vacancy

It took four rounds of voting this afternoon, but the City Council ultimately voted to appoint Abel Pacheco to fill the vacancy left when Rob Johnson resigned his seat as the District 4 representative on the Council.

District 4 Council member Abel Pacheco

Four of the eleven applicants were nominated by Council members for possible appointment:

  • Brooke Brod, nominated by Gonzalez;
  • David Goldberg, nominated by Bagshaw;
  • Sherae Lascelles, nominated by Sawant; and
  • Abel Pacheco, nominated by Mosqueda.

After a discussion session among the Council members, the voting rounds began.

For the first three rounds, O’Brien and Bagshaw consistently voted for Goldberg, Sawant voted for Lascelles, Gonzalez voted for Brod, and Mosqueda and Juarez voted for Pacheco.¬† Herbold and Harrell also voted for Pacheco in the first round, but subsequently flipped to Brod. With no clear movement toward a majority candidate, Harrell called for another discussion session, and said that if in round 4 nothing much changed he would end the voting for the day and call a special session for later in the week to resume voting.

In round 4, Bagshaw flipped to Pacheco, and then Herbold, after a long silence where she and Gonzalez wordlessly exchanged  grimaces, switched her vote back to Pacheco as well. When Harrell, who voted last as Council President, also flipped back to Pacheco, the deal was sealed. Pacheco was immediately sworn in to office, and gave a tearful acceptance speech.

Abel Pacheco tacking the oath of office to become a City Council member

In a brief press interview after the Council meeting adjourned, Pacheco confirmed that he will withdraw from the District 4 election.

Pacheco has served as the Director of Engagement for the University of Washington’s MESA program. For more background, here is his application to the City Council, and the Form F-1 financial disclosure form he filed as a candidate for office.