Left In Lowell

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August 15, 2011

Who’s Afraid of [a Preliminary] ?

by at 10:58 am.

Can you hear the buzz? “Why do we need a preliminary JUST to eliminate one person?” “The City Council should try to save the $50,000*. We could hire another librarian for that.”

The boo birds are chirping away! So, who is afraid of a preliminary? Why?

Here are some sketchy points:
- Candidates that decided not to bother campaigning until after Labor Day could get caught woefully short. Incumbents, at least, can use the Council meetings to promote themselves. Or “demote,” as the case may be. So, lazy challengers or those that think that they have 5000 voters in their back pocket and that they own Belvidere will know FOR SURE how popular they truly are. Hint, Hint: Everybody loves you to your face.
- Candidates that have run for another office will know where they stand, when considered for City Council. Not all seats are created equal.
- A glance over the last couple of preliminaries suggest if you don’t place 13th or better, you’re done. However, honestly, it will depend on the spread. If 8 thru 15 are tighly grouped, votes wise, then the general is up for grabs. Except, for maybe the 16th-18th? But, I’ll propose, that if there is a decent gap in voter preference somewhere in the placement, the candidates on the wrong side of the gap will not see the inside of the swing gate in 2012.
-Caulfield is out and the 2009 bottom three finishers are vunerable. Though an incumbent could tank in the preliminary and then claw back a “W” in the general. Assuming they weren’t demoralized and could rally some troops to help them. It’s harder for long term incumbents to wage a ground game. Their family is tired of campaigns and their friends/supporters rather write a check for $100.
- Expect: 1st-6th place finishers to claim they “are solid,” 7th-11th place finisher to claim “with a little more work in the neighborhoods I was weak in, I’ll be solid,” 12th-15th place to blurt “Don’t count me out,” and 16th-18th to yell “This is Lowell, anything can happen!”
- Expect to see mailers. Doubt anyone will go negative.
- WCAP is going to see some dough coming in, I’ll bet.
- Expect campaign signage to filter into store fronts, starting now. Since the last day to withdraw is August 25th, expect yards to bloom signage Saturday the 27th.

Speaking of August 25th, will one of the candidates play “hero” and withdraw? That could set them up nicely for a 2013 bid? Though, who likes a quitter? Really? And is there an effort under way to find a soft spot in the line up? Who would have the balls to suggest to a candidate that they withdraw?

I want a preliminary. That way, come Sept. 28th, we’ll know who is “all hat and no cattle.”

* Expect the cost estimate for a preliminary to fluctuate wildly, depending on who is doing the talking. I used 50K because it’s a middle of the road guess.

6 Responses to “Who’s Afraid of [a Preliminary] ?”

  1. waittilnextyr Says:

    At least the election money stays in the City, so consider the $50K a local “stimulus”.

  2. Dan Speare Says:

    Do you think any of the weaker candidates like Fred or Van might drop out?

  3. Jack Says:

    I’m afraid Doyle might bail. He’s the one guy an “insider” could beg into taking a powder. Though he lives to cause a ruckus at forums.

    Other candidates likely knew they were fighting uphill when they started. Some may be running a positional race for 2013. We know A. Mercier, Belley, Leahy, Kennedy & Belanger do enjoy some name recognition because of previous races. So, it is plausible that Pech, Nuon or Wajiniku could be running to set up for another bid later.

  4. Robby G. Says:

    The election is our right and we should be allowed to vote in this; regardless of how many candidates it eliminates. The council should not have eliminated this 2 years ago.

    Anyone care to guess who they believe will finish last? Or, what I think is more interesting, first place?

    As to the signs, they are already popping up. At least over here in Pawtucketville, anyway. MacDonald and Ross-Sitcawich have a number out there this early. I have heard some “boo birds” as you call em’ already complain over this. I don’t see the problem and any ordinance against it is garbage. If I want to put a sign on MY property, Im going to do it. Seeing that the preliminary election is next month, signs up now shouldn’t be violating anything anyway. But even if we didn’t have the preliminary, if I were a candidate I would have my signs out there ASAP.

    Kristin Ross-Sitcawich: Love the pink! It works on yours. Rita’s, eh, not so much! I want to vomit every time I see that glow-in-the-dark pink lettering on top of an all black background.

    Something tells me this year we will see at least 2 newcomers to the council. Agree that Elliot, Mendonca, and Murphy are the incumbents on the line this year.

    I look forward to more posts on the council race, I think its going to be just as exciting as 2 years ago.

  5. Dan Says:

    Do you all think someone will drop out and save the City around $50,000?

  6. Prince Charming Says:

    If I were a candidate that didn’t want a prelim I’d find some dirt on a candidate and FORCE him out.

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