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I don't initiate Hangouts, but will attend if invited.
Wednesday, February 11, 2015
Yup, it's not the end--it's the beginning, summarized by the Eagle-solicited reaction statement just now sent to self-desccribed reporter, Dale:
someone who never ran before and who got into the race too late to
build a political machine of a size competitive with Team Wilson, the
resulting vote isn't surprising, but at least during the campaign, I
discovered the root of why even Team Wilson couldn't drive voter
turnout, nor, for that matter, did all the big ad buys and political
trinkets bought by Team Vanhooser.
I address my supporters, that will be the key thing I mention as well
as urging them to work to turn that around for elections to come.
Voters are thoroughly convinced that no matter who is elected, the City
fails to change in a better direction, and turning around that long
ingrained fatalism takes more than a few weeks to accomplish.
turnout is key, and it's clear that even newspaper endorsements fail in
that area. There's a bright side to the result, though: as I said at
the launch of my campaign, I decided to run, even at essentially the
last minute, because I realized that I did have a voter base, and it was
Vanhooser that gave me that base, and that the base was city-wide.
Judging from the Vanhooser result, it's safe to say that if the entirety
of my voter base had lived within Ward 5, I would have won.
campaign had two goals: defeat Vanhooser, and improve Ward 5 from the
neglect it suffered under Wilson. Achieving one out of two goals ain't
What follows is a statement submitted to the pro-Wilson pro-Vahnooser Route 60 Sentinel:
surprised at the election results, actually, because of the turn-out
figures. Talking to the people in Ward 5 gave me the impression that
there's a strong belief out there that no matter who is elected, the
streets will always get neglected. That's a tough conviction to
overcome, especially after decades of this pattern. Part of what
figured is the turn-out of the well established Wilson machine,
reminiscent of the old Mayor Daly phenomenon in Chicago. Put that up
against a newbie with no machinery and it's not Goliath v. David, it's
Goliath v. infant David with a deep-rooted voter despair complex.
Still, for my first time at this, it's not bad considering what was put
into it, dollar for dollar. I was able to cover about 1/3 of Ward 5
with the campaign, and got slightly less than 1/3 of the vote with that
expenditure. Not a bad return on expenses totaling considerably less
election records show that spending on campaign trinkets doesn't drive
turnout--all the money spent by the incumbent didn't drive turnout
either. Nor did Vanhooser's big radio, newspaper, and trinket buys. The
voters weren't crazy about those guys, clearly, but their respective
support machines were, and that's something I just don't have. That's
the kind of thing I moved out of Illinois over.
was key, and if I couldn't convince people that I could succeed in
breaking the usual expected inner city neglect Ward 5 had become
accustomed to, no amount of campaign spending could change that mindset
either. It's become that deeply ingrained.
another aspect to my campaign that is much better news, though, which
leaves me happy about things all the same. That aspect is something I
mentioned in the debate: I was running because I had a voter base that
Vanhooser gave me. However, that's a city-wide base that would have put
me in the victory column if they had all resided in Ward 5, but I took
that into consideration when I campaigned equally for Shewey as I
campaigned for myself. Somebody somewhere cited early polls showing
Vanhooser leading Shewey by 60%, but if the polling company was the same
one that showed a wide margin of support for that grand city parks
master plan that failed the vote miserably, well, you can see the huge
credibility gap in that one.
you can see the bright side of my campaign, too--the voter base that
Vanhooser gave me didn't work within the confines of Ward 5, but it paid
off for the mayor. I'm not out the cash that Vanhooser is out, having
applied strategy in the spending of limited resources, but all that big
spending Vanhooser did failed to drive turnout as well. What I spent
per vote that I got was pretty good; Vanhooser, not so much.
It's all good, I've got new friends, and from what I hear, I've made a difference in how the City does business. It's all good