Monday, November 21, 2005

So What Happened in District 3?- The Mayor Rocky Anderson Factor

If District 3 is heavily Democrat and one of Mayor Rocky Anderson's best districts, why did Councilman Eric Jergensen win? After all, he is Mayor Anderson's political enemy and not a Democrat. A large part of Janneke House's loss can be tied directly to Mayor Anderson. He has basically split the Democratic Party in Salt Lake City. Mayor Anderson hosted a conversation on KCPW with a few Democratic heavyweights from the past including Former Utah Governor Cal Rampton and Judge D. Frank Wilkins. Many Democrats were upset with what they saw as Mayor Anderson attempting to place himself in that same group of de facto leaders. Some were also angered by Mayor Anderson's efforts to connect himself to the Democrat's success of a few decades ago as if to say "they were then, I am now". Even the panel seemed to resist that idea. It's an interesting discussion.


Blogger Shawn said...

City Council races, especially when they occur in an off-year, have a much lower profile than the Mayor's race. Of the nearly 15,000 registered voters in Dist. 3, only 4348 actually turned out. That's a pathetic 29% turnout. Compare that to the 48.47% turnout for the Mayor's race. Given these numbers, I'm convinced that Janneke was the victim of voter apathy/obliviousness and not a voter mandate for Jergensen. Combine this with the institutional network that Jergensen has (do I really have to call it by its name?) and the relative ease by which it can garner a measly 2200 votes that apparently is all it takes to win a city council election, then it seems even more convincing. Also, too, one must consider a phenomenon that is not unique to Dist. 3, but all of Salt Lake City, and that is transient voters. Anecdotally, the majority of folks I know in Dist 3 are renters and unaware of what city council district they're in, much less the fact that an election is occuring. Combined with the perceived hassle of voter registration, you basically have a whole population that unfortunately chooses to be unrepresented.

11/21/2005 01:26:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How could the residents in District 3 not know there was an election? Are you saying they are blind? Did they not see all the signs everywhere? I don't live in Bluffdale, but driving through I knew there was an election because of all the signs.

The fact that people did not come out and vote is not because they are renters, or registering is so hard and time consuming (poor babies), or the fact that they did not know an election is going on. It is because they did not want to take the time and effort to go out and find out what was happening in the community.

Maybe now that 'the institution' got Eric Jergensen elected the missing 19% of Rockys support group will make the effort (not excuses) to turn out for the next election. Until then Councilman Jergensen is in.


11/21/2005 02:22:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Okay, Shawn continues to beat the same old drum and it is getting tiring. His attitude that all Jergensen has to do is put his name on the ballet and every Mormon (say that word dripping with sarcasm if you are Shawn) will vote for him. What a narrow minded, prejudiced, uninformed, insulting opinion.

I happen to live in the District and am a Mormon and I am in the minority in my particular ward. Most of my ward members are Democrats. Are you saying that all of these Democrats don't have a single brain between them and that the minute you say Mormon to them they forget who and what they are and march to the polls and punch the ticket for the Republican? I would hope you are kidding by this type of insinuation.

While I rarely agree with my neighbors politically, I find them warm, caring, thinking individuals. And I feel confident they think the same of me.

We all think long and hard about the vote that we are going to cast and no one votes "JUST BECAUSE". Is it because the challenger's campaign made such a huge issue of DEMOCRAT, expecting everyone to pavlovianly vote for House that it is so easy to accuse others of this same type of thinking and action?

You owe every Mormon in this District an apology for your bigoted accusations. And you owe all the non-mormon voters an apology as well. You assume that your bias should be their bias.

11/21/2005 03:14:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I talked to someone in the 3rd district who said the people who voted in her precinct were mostly people she'd never seen. No one from her ward. Most were in the neighborhood less than a year. (This person is a Democrat - you'd recognize the name) Hmm. Did they come out because they know so much about their new home and district or did they come out because someone campaigning told them they needed to vote for the Democrat and stop the Mormon influence?

11/21/2005 03:53:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks Rocky, for bringing religious bigotry and hatred to town and making it THE issue.

11/21/2005 03:53:00 PM  
Blogger Shawn said...

Whoa, whoa, and whoa.

Is it beyond comprehension that a former stake president, with all his exposure to the members of the stake, can count on his hundreds personal relationships established during his stake presidency as supporters in a local election? My point was that people in the Stake will vote for Jergensen because they KNOW him, not because he is a Mormon. The institutional structure, in this context, is a social phenomenon, not a religious one.

People vote for those they know personally. Being in a high profile position like a stake president (not to mention an incumbent) creates a large number of personal relationships with people in the neighborhood. That's what my narrow minded, prejudiced, uninformed, insulting point is.

11/21/2005 04:13:00 PM  
Blogger Ethan said...

That's a fair point, Shawn.

11/21/2005 04:35:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

29% turnout in a municipal race is a huge turn out for Salt Lake City. That is a better turnout than 4 years ago in District 3 which was 24%. The Rocky factor made a big difference in the turnout for Janneke especially since there was nothing else on the ballot.
Rocky did not play a big role in any of the other city council races and it shows by their lower voter turnouts. District 7 had an open seat and only a 16.12% turnout. District 1 had a 21.83% turnout. Rocky's involvement obviously made a huge difference, if District 3 ended up with close to 29%.
However, this also proves how popular Jergensen is. He is well known in the community and not just because he was stake president. His "stake" is less than 1/3 of the district and Janneke is a part of that stake. His "institutional" name recognition is helpful but cannot account for all of his popularity.
It would be ridiculous not to see that Rocky did get his supporters to the polls in great numbers but it would also be silly not to recognize that Jergensen got them to the polls in greater numbers. District 3 is one of the most democratic areas in the state and Rocky cannot overlook the fact that he lost on his own turf. ALB

11/21/2005 07:42:00 PM  
Anonymous Michael said...

It's called voter apathy... less than 4,000 votes out of 16,000. However Residents have gotten "Wise" about Mr. "Preciate Cha."

11/22/2005 11:35:00 PM  

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