mayor

Elaine Thompson / Associated Press

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray has announced he's staying out of the already crowded race for mayor. Murray was considering a run as a write-in candidate, but said today he decided against it. Instead, the out-going mayor is backing one of the 21 candidates, former U.S. Attorney Jenny Durkan.

Amy Radil / KUOW

The Seattle mayor’s race just got another seismic shake-up. Jenny Durkan is getting into the Seattle mayor’s race. The official kick-off is Friday.

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray is trying to close all the city's hookah lounges.

Hookahs are the Middle Eastern water pipes used for smoking flavored tobacco, and the lounges have caught on in some parts of the country. Health risks from smoking aside, the city believes the lounges are also magnets for violent crime.

The legal justification for this crackdown is the state's ban on indoor smoking in public places, but the reasons go beyond smoking.