Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Council Races Will Go to Wire

The City-County Council races on November 3 will be extremely interesting, and I think will keep us watching until the last votes are counted.

Conventional wisdom and political targeting tells me that the powers-that-be think control of the Council will come down to five to seven races.

District 2 where At-Large incumbent Kip Tew, the Democrat, is battling Republican Colleen Fanning.  Fanning has raised over $33,000 but has spent the majority of it having just over $9K left in the bank.  After the campaign filing period, former Angie's List CEO Bill Osterle decided to drop another $20K on Fanning.  Tew has raised over $67,000 this year for his run and has almost $46,000 in his campaign account. With all of that money in the race, I'm sure you'll hear a lot about it over the last few days.  Fanning is up on TV with an ad.  Libertarian Sam Goldstein has raised over $3,000 for his run and has $2,500+ in the bank.

Next door in District 3, it's another battle of incumbents.  At-Large incumbent Pam Hickman finds herself in a battle with Republican pariah Christine Scales.  Scales, who defeated slated Republican Tim Craft in the May Primary by 131 votes, now finds herself as one of the Republican Party's needed incumbents to hold on.  Scales has raised over $12,000 but had only 1/3 of that left.  Since then, she gladly accepted the Marion County GOP's $1,500 despite the fact that they have fought against her in the past.  Hickman has raised over $14K for her run and has almost $8,000 left in the bank.  Libertarian Chris Bowen, who ran for Mayor in 2011, is also in this fight with no money in his campaign coffers.

On the Westside, Frank Islas, the Democratic challenger, is waging a powerful ground game against the known hard campaigning Janice McHenry in District 6.  Islas has raised over $7,500 for his run and has nearly $4,250 in the bank.  McHenry has raised over $14,000 for and spent all but $4,200.

In District 12, Blake Johnson, a dynamic young Democrat, is looking to take the seat of longtime Councillor Mary Moriarty Adams.  Susan Smith is the Republican nominee.  Smith's account shows $11,000+ raised but only a little over $1,000 in the bank.  Johnson has raised almost $28,000 with nearly $15,000 in the bank.  Libertarian Michael Gunyon has raised $650 and spent $640.

District 16 could be very interesting.  The new lines have left new turf to cover for incumbent Republican Jeff Miller.  That might open the door for a hard-driving campaigner like Emily Shrock.  The very concerned Miller has raised over $26,000 and has over $7,300 in the bank.  Shrock has raised over $35,000 and has over $17,000 left in the bank.  This one could come down to a hundred votes or less.

District 21 is another to keep an eye on.  Incumbent Frank Mascari, the Democrat, is battling Republican Anthony Davidson.  Davidson's campaign report shows about $7,000 raised and over $1,300 in the bank.  Mascari has raised over $15,000 and has $7,000 in the bank.  I still think this district leans towards Mascari.  Last week, MIBOR did drop $1,000 on Davidson to help his bottom line.

And finally, one that no one is talking about is District 22.  In that district, incumbent Bob Lutz, a Republican, is rematched against Democrat Jared Evans.  The district shifted south on Lutz into a less friendly area for Republicans.  Evans has raised over $6,800 for the race and has almost $2,000 left.  Lutz has raised almost $8,000 and has $1875 remaining.

Other matchups to watch include...

The race in District 4 between Ray Biederman, the Democrat, and Mike McQuillen, the GOP leader on the Council.  Will there be any backlash against McQuillen for his controversial votes on the Council over IMPD?

District 5's race between Democrat Curtis Bigsbee and Republican Jeff Coats.

District 15's battle between Democrat Christopher Wall and incumbent Republican Marilyn Pfisterer

The completely open seat in District 18 between Eddie Barnes, the Democrat, and Republican Susie Cordi.

District 19 where incumbent Ben Hunter, the Republican, battles Democrat David Ray.

Finally, does anyone know why my opponent in District 20, incumbent Councillor Jason Holliday loaned himself $9,000??

13 seats are needed to control the Council.

One thing we know...Jack Sandlin will be reelected.  Nice going Jack.

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