With a few very notable exceptions (Mike O’Brien), it has been a huge uphill battle to get Dems at any level of government to acknowledge need for privacy protections or oversight of big data use and sharing, or protection from federal overreach. (Indeed, we had some city council staff openly laughing at us before the Snowden revelations.)
(Councilmember Kshama Sawant deserves special mention for having been on top of this problematic issue since her first day in office, but of course she is not a Dem.)
I have high hopes of the new party leadership in Washington state however, Tina Podlodowski and Joe Pakootas, and now that Mayor Ed Murray is taking a very unambiguous stand on our sanctuary status, hopes that we might get some enforcement teeth in our municipal surveillance ordinance and start setting some precedents. (Such as the right to sue over privacy harms.)
Surveillance most harms vulnerable populations such as immigrants, survivors of domestic violence, and people of color — the people we offer sanctuary.
Here’s a round up of coverage on Sawant’s committee meeting that started investigating federal cameras on SCL poles last week: