07 November 2007

Cincinnati Voters Make Strange Statement

Of all the scenarios I imagined, I have to admit that electing all 9 incumbents was not one of them.

We all know that incumbency has benefits. But when one considers that the Enquirer, CityBeat and local blogs all endorsed non-incumbents, it becomes more puzzling. Furthermore, WBDZ and Dan Hurley's NewsMakers also featured extensive forums with non-incumbents.

Do people around here even bother to learn about candidates anymore? I'm skeptical.

The most surprising result to me is the failure of Greg Harris. He was probably the most qualified candidate in the entire field. Nobody brought as much to the table as Harris. He was endorsed by the Enquirer, CityBeat, and local blogs, and his appearances on NewsMakers and WBDZ's forum were very impressive.

I'm guessing the reason for the council outcome has to do with the lack of a hot, divisive issue. There was such an issue, but it was a county issue that had nothing to do with council. That took the heat off council. There was nothing council-related that got voters hot under the collar. The only issue that came close was The Banks, on which there was minimal disagreement because everyone wanted "to move forward."

No heated issues, no divisive positions... incumbency.

Compare that to Kentucky, which booted out its corrupt Governor (and Atty General) with extreme prejudice. I guess Kentucky is more interested in moving forward than Cincinnati. Maybe Greg Harris should move there.

I'd be interested in further analysis of the council election. Maybe one of the CityBeat reporters can do so after Greg Flannery's orgasm is over.


Radarman said...

I am a Harris admirer. I hope he will continue to seek office. It is rare for a non-incumbent to get elected to council on a first try, and his campaign was easy to miss. If there was a lit drop on Cutter Street, I missed it. Chris Bortz was the only candidate to climb our stoop.

ThatDeborahGirl said...

I have an analysis that fully plays the race card if you're interested.

Call it ironic satire with a spice of damn.

Mike said...

I think the most suprising result was Winburn. In past runs he was close to the top. I wonder if his gunshot ad backfired.

LDP said...

The ass-kicking sustained by Charlie Winburn was fantastic; I'm proud to have been a part of it.

WestEnder said...

I wouldn't be too thrilled... Winburn just missed, coming in 10th.

And it's even more disappointing than that... after Winburn, it was Cooper, Malone, and Bates. Yes, that's right... these four just missed being elected.

Anonymous said...

well, nobody watches Newsmakers (I click over to see who's on then go back to what I want to watch).

Nobody can hear the Buzz (it's transmitting power is rivaled only by WAIF and WCIN).

I might have voted for Harris but for the class warfare he waged when challenging Steve Chabot 3 years ago (Cranley's off year).

Winburn, Cooper, Malone: all name ID. Ditto Bates and to an extent Eby and Garry.

Here's the thing: 25 candidates on the ballot, an average 7 votes cast by each voter.

with 2:1 odds (nine incumbents, 16 challengers) even if each voter went for only one incumbent then they all get elected (Qualls & Monzel) or re-elected (the others). Malone & Smitherman were just barely unelected in 2005.

'09 might be a little more interesting, depending upon whether Crowley & Cranley step down early, and if Cole is able to re-gain ground lost (dropping from 3rd in '05 to what, 5th or 6th this time?)

Until unqualified and unelectable fringe and vanity candidates stop thrusting themselves upon the ballot the power of the Challenger will continue to be diluted.