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Archive for August 17th, 2009

A Mayoral Poll Worth Mentioning

Public Policy Polling rates the Foxx-Lassiter tilt a toss up now, which comports with everything I see and hear on the ground. Last fall PPP fairly nailed the outcome of the governor’s race — even if Tom Jensen along with every other expert wrongly opined that Bev Perdue could not possibly win metro Charlotte. That performance gives these numbers some weight and that outcome points to a key in the mayor’s race.

As Jensen notes, the new poll indicates that Anthony Foxx has a 59-30 advantage with Democrats who approve of Mayor Pat McCrory’s job performance. John Lassiter can do without those votes if he can get conservative Republicans to turn out to vote for him. Recall that those were the very folks who stayed at home in November, allowing Perdue to win Mecklenburg County. This is why Lassiter’s primary with Martin Davis is no mere formality.

If Lassiter dispatches Martin while alienating conservatives he makes things easier for Foxx. If instead Lassiter comes across as a principled, electable conservative who’ll check Foxx’s drive to turn Charlotte into a Democrat bastion, Foxx has a much tougher path to victory.

Here’s another thing that needs to get set straight. Lassiter may have more cash on hand at the moment, but he needs more cash. The other Dems on the council will pour cash into Foxx’s effort if need be and Foxx’s street-level operation will be better — or should be. Should Lassiter somehow get a 2-to-1 edge in funding, yeah, I’d pay attention to that, but anything short of that is not going to be a significant difference-maker for him.

This gonna be a close one, from all indications.

Update: Really cannot believe that John Lassiter reacted to this poll by saying he was “leading.” First off, it is not true. The result is within the margin of error and the 13 percent undecided number doubles that variable. Sometimes races really are too close to call. But second, and more importantly, Lassiter is wrong tell GOP voters that he is A-OK and in the lead. He needs to tell them that he is in a fight to the finish and keep plugging turnout.

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City Attorney: Let Them Eat Cake

Take a look at City Attorney Mac McCarley’s response to concerns that city-bought TV profiles of current council members constitute a de facto campaign contribution to candidates for political office.

I believe McCarley seriously contradicts himself when he asserts that the purpose of the profiles is “educating the public about City [sic] leadership and current affairs,” yet notes that the profiles will not be re-aired before the election. Well, why not? If they are merely educational and not advocacy, what is the problem?

I’ll tell you the real issue. McCarley and city staff know that they can do whatever they want so long as they have the barest justification, be it legal, fanciful, or somewhere in between. A city government TV channel — one many of us pay for via franchise rights and fees Time Warner recovers from subscribers — that was remotely concerned about fairness simply would not profile elected officials. Ever.

If you missed the profiles and want to see them via YouTube, go here for a copy of links to all council profiles.

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McCrory: “A Calling to Public Service”

Talkling to WPTF’s Bill LuMaye in Rawlee, Mayor Pat McCrory makes clear he is still mulling over running for higher office. He mentions that he has supporters who want him to run for governor again, and those who want him to run for Congress. McCrory says he hasn’t decided what to do and that the impact on his family of another campaign is something he’ll consider carefully.

But in talking about the 2008 governor’s race, McCrory called it “exhausting” and was clearly still troubled by the outcome. Color me doubtful he tries that again. The smaller footprint of a congressional race, however, is another matter. To run against Larry Kissell next year, as some consultants have floated, McCrory would first have to move from his Maryland Ave. home — at least technically — and into the slice of East Charlotte and a bit of Uptown that is in Kissell’s district.*

Might happen, might not.

Hat tip Right Angles

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