Thursday, December 04, 2008

City Council Feedback: I Did Win That District

I'm not sure I agree that I'm too conservative for the Jim Vokal city council district. I'm not sure I was too conservative for the county board district I just lost.

How can I say that?

In my race, the Democrat got 500 fewer votes in 2008 than in 2004. The total turnout was 2,000 votes less than in 2004. My conclusion: I was done in by the mud bombs dropped on me in the final days -- including he likes big government and wants to raise your taxes (he's not conservative enough!) -- plus discouraged Republicans staying home, perhaps in part because of the mud bombs portraying me as a big-guv fiscal liberal.

I got 3,400 fewer votes than in 2004. I was not a perfect candidate or commissioner, but I was a scandal-free incumbent. Losing 24% of my support from 2004 was striking.

I suppose the Democrat got some of those votes, but remember that the Democratic candidate also received fewer votes. There was a Green Party candidate who got a couple-thousand votes, but I doubt those were people who voted for me. The problem for me was that too many conservative voters didn't vote for me.

The district I represented as a state senator covered much of the same territory Jim Vokal represents. I was the same pro-life fiscal conservative then that I am now.


OmaSteak said...

Kraft didn't drop "mud bombs" on you during the last days of your county board race, he put out a couple of mailings in which he put a negative spin on a couple of votes you made in the past. You've spoken and written about your rationale for those votes at length, but the bottom line is that you were unprepared for and unable to effectively respond to Kraft's ads. On their face, the votes were controversial since they made the OWH and all Kraft did was spin them to his advantage. He didn't smear you or your family. Just ask Jim Vokal what real mud slinging is. He has plenty of experience from his race against Ann Boyle four years ago when he was the target. You learned a valuable lesson and it's time to move on.

Ryan the Angry Midget said...


I don't want to make it seem like a conservative can't win in our city council district. Obviously, conservatives have been successful in the past and I believe they will again in the future.

I think this last election was a bad one for anyone who put themselves on the right side of the political spectrum. I think party affiliation for most local elected positions is not as important as electing a good person, but I know a lot of people don't think that way. In fact, when voters are uninformed, party affiliation often becomes the defacto issue that decides their vote.

You had a bad combination of a conservative backlash and a large number of voters who were interested in national elections, but didn't do their homework on local races. That's just my opinion for whatever it's worth.

I would never advocate that you change your approach, but for this last election, being so openly conservative did you no favors.