Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Seven Days

Let's start thing out, seven days out, with a little City Council SAB, District 5 style:

Candidate Jon Blumenthal and Scrubs actor, Zach Braff:

Candidate Jean Stothert and Night Court actress, Markie Post:


Seven days left as things get frenetic in the campaign corridors.

Lotsa ads. Lotsa mail. Lotsa door to door.

And the OWH has the latest on the NADC money numbers for the three Mayoral candidates.

Once again, Hal Daub has a fairly commanding lead in the money raised, and has also spent significantly more than Jim Suttle of Jim Vokal.

Suttle has more Cash On Hand going into the final week, but...what does that extra cash do for you if you don't make it into the final two? If he is saving it, does that indicate that he is confident...or foolhardy?

Vokal is much lower in all three columns, but is it enough to get him through the Primary? And if he does get through, is it a whole new money-raising ball game? One would think so. But he has to get past Tuesday first.

April 7th has the potential to be a long night.


Some interesting dynamics are at stake for Tuesday. For one, Primary turnout, at least in the last two city-wide elections, has been significantly lower than the General.

In 2001, Primary v.s General turnout was 25% to 45%. In 2005 it was 16% to 25%. However, note that in neither of those Mayoral Primaries were there more than two candidates -- so voters didn't have any real reason to hustle to the polls, unless there was a contested City Council Primary.

In 2001 there were several heavily contested Council Primaries, but the real battle was the knockdown-dragout between Mike Fahey and Hal Daub that came down to around a thousand votes in the General.

But this year's Primary will be a bit different, and that could have unusual effects.

With the Mayor's race between a big three, that should bring out the hard-core voters without any problem. 

Council District 3 is highly competitive, so turnout shouldn't be much of an issue there.

But the rest? With mainly head to head match-ups, would voters who don't care which Mayoral candidates make it to the general (or maybe if they believe the CW that Hal Daub is way ahead), not bother turning out?

Voting history (generally) says, that if there is a two-person race, the candidate who wins the primary wins the general.

So you look at three potentially close races:

District 2
Frank Brown vs. Ben Gray

District 5
 Jean Stothert vs. Jon Blumenthal

District 6
Franklin Thompson vs. Walt Peffer

Pick the winner next Tuesday and in all likelihood, you've picked your winner for the general.

Jim Vokal's 2005 hotly contested race with Anne Boyle was a good indicator. Though Vokal was an incumbent, he was Republican running in a Democrat district, against an opponent with high name ID.

The Primary was 51.59% - 47.88% Vokal.
And the General was...51.99% - 47.46% Vokal.

(Chuck Sigerson's 2001 race, where he won 57% and 52% in the Primary and General, shows that as well.)

If you're coming in second in a three or more-way primary, you've still got hope, and maybe even a good chance -- note for District 3 candidates.

But in the others? Unless it's razor thin, you better win in Tuesday's primary.

We're not saying it's over. But you've got lots and lots of ground to make up.


The Weird Harold is back.

The World Herald is what?

Check out WeirdHarold.com. You'll get several chuckles.


Anonymous said...

Each day Vokal takes votes away from Daub on this pension issue. Will be interesting once he makes it through, especially if he wins the Primary. Money wont be an issue anymore and the guy with the least amount, most likely will be the next Mayor despite the efforts of the media to make money the big issue.

Anonymous said...

Keep in mind, these numbers are as of last week, which means in some cases two weeks of television time have gone up for the campaigns.

That COH number for Suttle therefore isn't "too little too late," but rather exactly what they need with room to spare for TV - check the buys. Whatever's left over after their buy for the next week can be spent on mail and other efforts. Just because the money wasn't spent as of two weeks ago, doesn't mean it won't be spent.

Daub is having a surprisingly difficult time raising money, as Suttle is keeping pace with him and has outpaced him in cash on hand on every report. So, the question for Daub is - why spend so much before the primary?

Vokal, assuming that the report includes his buys from every week until the last week, has less than $5,000 to cover costs after he paid for his TV ads.

Anonymous said...

Vokal gambled and lost. He'd do the same with Omaha's finances.

Geosuser said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Street Sweeper said...

Sorry, over the line. Try again.

Mex Roats said...

Who do i look like?!?!?!

Anonymous said...


Ricky said...

If it is true that winning the primary means winning the general then I think Walt Pfeffer in District 6 is in trouble.
He was late getting started and has far fewer signs than FT.
Walt has a lot less cash also.
But in this case I think the guy who loses the primary may win the general.
Not a lot of attention has been paid to this race.
Maybe Walt will use the fact that Kermit Brashear, he who is willing to stab Omaha in the back by helping the Royals move to Sarpy County, gave $500 to Franklin.
I would campaign on that if I were the challenger.

ricky from district 6

Anonymous said...

Hal has spent $500,000? He must not be THAT far ahead.

3rd floor watcher said...

No Hal spent $500,000 to make sure he kicks your boys butt.

Anonymous said...

I think Daub can spend a billion dollars in Omaha and the results are the same. 50 percent of R's love him, 50 percent of R's hate him and 100 percent of Dems hate him.

Daub has the same ceiling that Hillary Clinton had.

Vokal will squeak by Suttle in the primary, then squeak by Daub in the general. Vokal will have bipartisan support; Daub will have the exact same people that have been voting for him for 70 years. Only by now, most of them have died.

Rosenblatt supporter said...

it was Fahey/Meca that drove the royals to sarpy county...

Anonymous said...

John Blumenthal had better ask his look alike actor buddy for a contribution. It looks like Blumenthal has just over $18K cash on hand to $44K plus for Stothert.

Six Dollar Parker said...

to Rosenblatt Supporer: No, it was The Mecca Board(including Hal Daub, David Sokol and Terry Moore)that insisted that Mecca control the new BB Stadium. Fahey acceded and the "Ball" was in their court. Sarpy moved in the vacuum. This is much ado about $6.00 parking.

Third FL Watcher said...

I enjoy reading this blog, because the views on here are so different than what I'm hearing from people. I have spoken to many in Omaha about this election. Many don't care, of the ones that do, they say it will be Daub in a landslide. I just think Daub hates losing, and he is spending money to make sure that doesn't happen.

On Vokal, I'm not too sure what to think. If he wins, it'll be because of the anti-Hal people jumping over to the Vokal side. Otherwise, I cannot see a Vokal win.

Suttle has the best chance to beat Daub, he just needs to listen to his campaign managers. So far he's gone soft on the ads, but to win, I'm afraid Suttle will have to go negative and I think that's not the Jim Suttle many of us know.

The real 3rd floor watcher said...

He or she above is not the real 3rd Floor Watcher...lol

3rd floor watcher said...

Jim Vokal is dreaming if he can even get a 1/4 of the republican vote.

Anonymous said...

Heh... Dreaming all the way into the officially non-partisan mayor's office.

Someone who knows said...

Jim Suttle not go negative?! Do you know the man? While one hand is shaking in the front, the other is shanking in the back.

Anonymous said...

Ewwww....I don't want to know what Jim Suttle's hands are shaking -- in the front OR in the back!

Anonymous said...


Daub in first
Suttle narrows sneaks by Vokal early the next morning after a recount.

Festersen big
Brown big
Buescher & Jerram neck & neck
Franklin Thompson big
Jean S. big

we'll see, get out and vote!