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caption: A group of protesters stand in front of hundreds of other protesters as Seattle police officers dressed in riot gear shine lights following the use tear gas, pepper spray and flash-bang grenades on the fifth day of protests following the violent police killing of George Floyd on Tuesday, June 2, 2020, at the intersection 11th and Pine Streets in Seattle.
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A group of protesters stand in front of hundreds of other protesters as Seattle police officers dressed in riot gear shine lights following the use tear gas, pepper spray and flash-bang grenades on the fifth day of protests following the violent police killing of George Floyd on Tuesday, June 2, 2020, at the intersection 11th and Pine Streets in Seattle.
Credit: KUOW Photo/Megan Farmer

3 Seattle council members say Mayor Durkan should resign after police response to protests

At least three members of Seattle City Council are questioning Mayor Jenny Durkan’s leadership amid the ongoing protests for racial justice in the city.

The council members voiced their frustrations with the police response to peaceful protests on Monday. Some are also calling for cuts to Seattle Police Department's budget.

Three council members -- Kshama Sawant, Teresa Mosqueda and Tammy Morales — are calling on Mayor Durkan to resign or consider resigning.

"I support the growing number of people who have signed a petition calling on Mayor Durkan to resign or be impeached for gassing her own people," Sawant said on Monday.

That petition had nearly 25,000 signatures -- its goal -- by Tuesday afternoon. There are other petitions circulating as well.

"Even before the events of this past week, Durkan was failing the people of Seattle," Sawant said.

Councilmember Mosqueda echoed Sawant's statements during a council briefing Monday morning. She said the council will not pass Durkan's upcoming budget until the police department's finances are thoroughly scrutinized.

"Unlike past practices, we are not going to nibble around the edges of the mayor’s proposed budget," Mosqueda said. "This year, we are not going to pass the mayor’s 2020 revised budget until we as a council have a chance to have a full, thorough, and transparent deep dive into the Seattle Police Department’s funding."

Mosqueda further said "How many people need to write in about being gassed? How many people have to be sprayed in the street every night? The mayor should ask herself if she is the right leader, and resign."

Two thirds of the city council would have to vote to impeach the mayor. That means three more council members would have to join Sawant, Mosqueda, and Morales.

When asked about such calls from council members on Sunday, Durkan said she would not be "distracted from the critical work that needs to be done."