**There were a number of hyperlinks to sources that, unfortunately, did not make it when I posted this... I'll try to fix it.**

To some, this line of questioning may seem naive. I am a political rookie, I confess. I'm just (and maybe I shouldn't be?) surprised by the election results and I wanted to open this up for (civilized, please) discussion if anyone's game.

The president is a Democrat. Congress has a Democratic majority.
Albuquerque had the same Democrat for mayor for three terms, two of which were consecutive... During the W. years, no less.

And yet, we find ourselves today with a Republican mayor (Richard Berry) and a Republican majority for our City Council.

What happened to the wave of support for the Democrats during the 2008 presidential election? Is Obama's current performance undermining local Democrats' popularity, or did they dig their own graves? Was it simply a case of split voting for Democrats when Republicans had a single candidate they could rally behind? Supposedly the independents swinging right may have had a strong hand in the results. Or, perhaps, were Republicans merely more organized for this local election? According to John Wertheim, former NM Democratic Party Chairman:
Republican voters are more reliable when it comes to voting and easier to turn out. Dems need to be prodded and you need money to prod them... (see Joe Monahan's blog today for more).

What are the implications of this election, both locally and nationally?

A qualification from the Chair of the NM Democratic Party:
(from another AbqJournal.com article)
Democratic Party of New Mexico Chairman Javier Gonzales issued a statement late Tuesday -- even as the Republican Berry appeared headed for a victory -- that looked like some counterclockwise (and possibly pre-emptive) spin.

"Albuquerque voters today voted overwhelmingly for a Democrat to represent them as their mayor," Gonzales said in a statement published in The New Mexico Independent. "Marty Chavez and Richard Romero have received more than 55 percent of the vote."

More food for thought: In Northern Virginia, a typically 'dark blue' region, a Democrat narrowly won an election by 1%. http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=112970455

Maybe this happens all the time with local elections, but AP released an article on our elections that's been picked up all across the web.

I wonder if we'll see more elections like this throughout the country and I'm not the only one.

Views: 4

Comment by slamwagon on October 7, 2009 at 4:49pm
What do you mean by "Obama's current performance?"
Comment by Tiffany on October 7, 2009 at 6:56pm
It's too bad my hyperlinks didn't make it in the blog. I'll try to fix that.
You pose a good question. Perhaps I should've qualified it more. He is growing less and less popular, right? Is that affecting Democrats at the local level? SNL is even jumping on the "what is Obama actually doing?" bandwagon: http://edition.cnn.com/2009/SHOWBIZ/TV/10/07/snl.politics.obama/
Comment by Tiffany on October 8, 2009 at 8:03am
Hmm. I know over the past decade, to be sure, there's been evidence to support what you're saying, Dert & Boris. I'm not quite ready to stop voting, though. I think, especially in this situation, that it made a huge impact on our local election--who voted and who stayed home. (Though sometimes, like in 2000, it really does seem that even putting your ballot in the reader doesn't mean it's counted.)
Comment by once banned twice shy on October 8, 2009 at 9:44am

Consider this: if you add up the votes of Romero and Chavez, Albq. actually DID vote for a Democrat for mayor. Just not the same Democrat. Also, R.J. Berry got 43% of the vote of a QUARTER of the city's population. So his "mandate" is even smaller if you crunch the numbers.

I think this is not a sign of disenchantment with Democrats, but disenchantment with Marty Chavez. A lot of people apparently were offended with his going to court to get the law changed so he could run again. Smacks of a dictatorial style to a lot of people...
Comment by Tricross on October 8, 2009 at 10:42am
OBTS - Don't forget that the city council has been handed over to the GOP also.


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