30 September 2009

Municipal round-up

1.  St. John’s:  A bunch of things already noted.  Here are a few additional quickies:

Municipal politics has never been issue driven and that seemed to be the case across the board.  2009 confirms the iron law:  to get elected talk about anything but what you’ll be responsible for.  Tom Hann and Sandy Hickman both boosted their votes at large, Hann by talking about search and rescue and Hickman with ferry service at Port aux Basques.  Colbert reputedly took a holiday in the middle of the campaign.

Recycling is popular in the city, especially if you look at the trend to re-elect incumbents.  In Ward Three, voters elected a guy who used to be on council almost 20 years ago.

Cost per vote:  Sheilagh O’Leary brought up something about finances but it wasn’t clear if she was complaining about the cost of  campaigns or about the fact that campaign contributions aren’t tax deductible.

Doesn’t matter:  just take a look at what the candidates spent in the mayoral and deputy mayoral campaigns compared to the votes received.  Gigantic sums, even if some of its was comp/in-kind and the vote results were appalling. On the other hand, look at what other candidates in city-wide races did with only a tiny bit of spending. 

We’ll have to wait until the official reports, but a preliminary winner would be Gerry Colbert who spent nothing but sweat apparently and pulled in 16,000 votes.

2.  Paradise:  Ralph Wiseman loses either way.   As of last night, a 19 year old second year university student beat him by three votes.  If the recount affirms that victory, the voters just slapped Wiseman hard.  if he wins on the recount, they have slapped him hard and put him in a really tough spot for the next four years.  held have to radically change his approach or risk being run out of town on a rail.

3.  Corner Brook:  A last minute promise of hundreds of millions in a new hospital couldn’t save Danny and Tom’s hand-picked mayor.