Thursday, October 10, 2013

Now The Finger-Pointing; Dinelli Debacle Brings Dem Depression; Read What They're Saying About The Berry Blow-out And What Dems Need To Get Back In The Game 

Well, what would the aftermath of a blow-out election like the one we had in ABQ Tuesday night be without finger-pointing, recrimination and the blame game? Why, it wouldn't be much fun at all. So let's go to reader email as they react to the outsized re-election win of Republican Mayor Richard Berry.

Reader Michael Lamb writes:

Joe, this quote is for those Democrats who don't see the Albuquerque mayoral election as signifying trouble for the Dems in 2014 when Governor Martinez will seek re-election:

"There is no danger that Titanic will sink. The boat is unsinkable and nothing but inconvenience will be suffered by the passengers."Phillip Franklin, White Star Line Vice-President

Reader and Mayor Berry supporter Jim McClure weighs in with this:

I'm not sure that a higher voter turnout or earlier campaign launch would have helped Pete Dinelli's campaign sell a faulty product. I had a favorable opinion of Dinelli before the campaign. He impressed me as a conscientious and respected public servant who would be a serious contender for mayor.

My opinion changed when Dinelli started campaigning. His plan to add $1.5 billion in new debt, along with his obvious pandering to the unions, convinced me that the taxpayers would be taken to the cleaners in a Dinelli administration. His proposal to expand a sleepy airport was just plain silly. And his scare-tactic public safety ads were downright sleazy: I found them offensive and it's possible other voters agreed. My impression is that Dinelli ran a mostly negative campaign that failed to lay a glove on Berry and created new negatives for himself.

Reader Richard Flores says the doom and gloom in portions of the Dem camp are not justified:

I disagree that the Berry landslide alone dooms the Dems in the upcoming governor's race. Dinelli was not a strong candidate! Berry is a popular mayor, and the Democratic party is in a "hitting slump." We need candidates that will energize the party, think City Councilor Ken Sanchez or southern congressional candidate Roxanne Lara. A Sanchez/Berry race would have made for a much more interesting competition. The good old days of Democratic control in NM are over, still, having four of five reps at the national level tells me that the party can get out the vote when it counts. The future is not as gloomy as the pundits think.

Reader Kathryn Carroll asks:

What about Democratic Party Chairman Sam Bregman, who was apparently hiding under a rock during the entire mayoral campaign? When does he show up and lead the Party?


No blame game blog would be complete without Senior Alligator analysis, and here it is:

Pete Dinelli lost because he ran a lousy, uninspired campaign, where he asked for votes solely because he is a Democrat. Dinelli made no effort to inspire the public and did absolutely nothing to fire up the base. 

Dinelli had the chance to raise issues about Berry's judgment, such as handing over so much authority to Darren White as public safety director and his total reliance on a guy like political adviser Jay McCleskey.

 It is no secret that in 2012 Pat Woods, a Republican, successfully ran against McCleskey in his primary race in the Clovis area and defeated ta Martinez handpicked candidate. Yet, Dinelli ignored such a valuable campaign tool.

Beginning with Diane Denish's equally uninspiring 2010 campaign for governor, Democrats seem to run races solely to be in the race, not to win. Where is the raw meat that the Democratic base craves? 

In a Democrat majority state and city, if you don't fire up the base, you lose. Period. Where are the Democrats with the courage of conviction? Stop poll testing positions and sticking your finger up in the wind to see which way the wind blows. Run the race from the heart and fight for what you believe in.

This election should be a wake up call to all Democrats running for or considering running for any office for 2014. You must drive turnout by your actions. The base is tired of Democrats who are afraid of their own shadows let alone those of McCleskey and Martinez.

Like him or not, Jay is getting the job done for his team while his foes flounder. And that's the deciding difference in the world of today's La Politica.

Thanks for the comments and to those who tuned in to our Election Night coverage Tuesday. See you next week.

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