Thursday, February 12, 2015

Too luscious to not share--plus math update

Oooooops--I plumb fergot to mention that I took down big-spending  leading-in-the-polls-at-60-percent Vanhooser for a lousy $180-ish bucks.  $100 of that was the registration fee. 60 some-odd was for the PDQ printing order and the rest was 300-for-a-buck index cards marked with Sharpie markers.

Total handbills (cards plus door-hangers) distributed: a little over 1,000 and there are over 3,000 registered voters in Ward 5, so distribution total rather closely matched the votes I got--damn amazing level of productivity, that. If/when I run again, that same strategy will be the method of choice, as I'm certain that if I had distributed twice that many, I would have gotten 2/3 of the vote. Vanhooser blew a wad on buttons, signs, newspaper stickers, radio spots and robo-calls, and yet didn't get anywhere close to that nearly 1:1 ratio of productivity that I got.

Okay, so a lot of strategic legwork went into that, too, and for that, I thank my volunteers profusely. Yes, I lost for a reason...but so did Vanhooser, and he lost a whole truckload lot bigger than I did, ha.

Oh, the irony-------the irony!  The bonus was how little was spent and yet produced almost one third of the Ward 5 vote. By all means, call this the new low in politics!

And now my supporters understand why I wasn't asking them for money. But this I ask again: Tammy who? Who's Tammy?


I had to chuckle when someone pointed out that a 1:1 ratio of production would be 1000 flyers = 1000 votes, and what I got was 1000 flyers = 200-ish votes.  Well, that statement would be true if all 3000-ish registered voters in Ward 5 turned out, and they didn't.  Most of Ward 5 didn't turn out to actually vote for Wilson or for me, so that's what tosses this argument into a cocked hat.  It's also a fact that makes the Eagle's claim that Wilson's win was impressive completely bogus.  What happened was a typical turnout, and that's why I was saying all along that I would have been successful if I could have raised the turnout numbers, and that the public opinion that the City wouldn't change no matter who is elected was deeply ingrained over decades of neglect.

It is also the case that Vanhooser's massive throw-lots-of-money-at-it didn't drive turnout, and this is something I knew at the outset: yard signs, buttons, mailers, robo-calls, ad buys on radio and newspaper do not drive turnout and so I was not about to raise money for any of that--it would have been a waste, and that's a lesson Vanhooser is just now learning.

What we're actually looking at is a percentage of the percentage that turned out, so we need to get beyond basic 7th grade math to correctly analyze what happened.  What happened was numbers that told me what the size of the Wilson machine is, and her yard signs informed me exactly who belonged to that machine, particularly the commercial membership, therefore it informed me (albeit too late for this election) where and how best to turn that around (targeting), but for the future. 

What happened was numbers that confirmed my evaluation of the futility of blowing money on yard signs, buttons, and all the typical nonsense that political campaigns blow money on. What the numbers told me was that driving voter turnout involves ground work during a time period that exceeds the months between filing for office and the election, so the serious work toward a serious run for office doesn't end now--it begins now.

And it begins with a fresh record of taking down Vanhooser, compared to which, Wilson's just chump sofa cushion coin.  Betting on a rookie politician to make a big difference is a bet with bad odds, but now I have a record: this rookie can and does make a huge difference.

What I have now is 4 years to cultivate my voter base into a movement.

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