Member of the reality-based community of progressive (not anonymous) Massachusetts blogs
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.
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