Wednesday, June 14, 2017

General Elections-How I did

So as always, I want to follow up my predictions with how I did. (Here are my predictions, If you want to reread them).

First question 2. I, like everyone else, guessed this would not pass, and it did about how I predicted.

I wrote that I thought question 1 would not pass. So check 2, got it right. However I was way off on it being close. I felt question 1 supporters were gaining ground. They gained nothing and lost in a landslide. This loss was so bad that I don't think there will be any stomach for making any changes moving forward. It is clear the people of Boulder City, at least for now, feel the growth ordinance should be left alone. The fact that this was on the ballot had impact on everything else. It also showed the limits of the "Woodbury" influence. A great man, who will continue to have much influence in this town, but the feeling of inevitability around issues he backs is gone.

Next, the hardest loss for me, Cam Walker. I noted that it would be close and a tough win for Cam but I felt he would get reelected. I was wrong. It was fairly close with only a few hundred votes between him and reelection. He was able to pull votes that also went No on 1 but 1 had to be closer for this to give him the win. I feel Cam has served us well and his presence will be missed. I don't know what is next for Cam Walker but I hope he will continue to be involved, as he has done much good for this town. Maybe we will see his name on a ballot again?

John Milburn also lost, which I predicted, but for the wrong reasons. I had thought that his indifference would hurt him but rather I think his votes were swept up in the anti-growth fever. He had publicly opposed 1 but was connected to it none the less. While I hope John will continue to be engaged in the community, because he really is a great man, I think ,we will not be seeing his name on a ballot again.

Warren Harhay or now Councilman Harhay, I totally got this one right. I guessed his win and that he would pull more votes than McManus. His style is well liked and it really is an amazing story to go from complete unknown in the town to the man with the most votes. I think Councilman Harhay will end up being a surprise in many ways and will actually lead in a fairly centric fashion. This will please many who voted against him and anger some who voted for him, but overall will be good for the town.(more on this below)

I think nothing showed the power of the Alliance's influence like Councilman McManus's win. He was very quiet the last few weeks, was not that outgoing, but won even without a smile. And I will note, I did see after the election that he is capable of smiling. While I was wrong on the outcome I think he will add some powerful insight to the council.

So what now? I predict that good things are in store for Boulder City. I'm an optimist. I think McManus will be less centrist than Harhay but I don't think either will be obstructionist.  There will be pressure from the extreme side of the Alliance to be just that. And it will be tempting. Being obstructionist could make a clear and easy articulation for the next election. "We have 2 votes but are hopeless because the majority of the other 3 votes. If you help us win the mayor and another seat we could have 4 votes and finally really make a difference." As I said this is tempting and the easy way to go. This is the, "us versus them" model. It will require avoiding true compromise, so you are free to always vote against the issue. The model is employed in DC all the time and does. 1. Energize the base and 2. Make arguments easy (true compromises can be intricate, take a lot of work and be difficult to explain/sell to the public.) The down side to this path is we will have two years of getting little to nothing done, angry meetings and strained relationships inside city hall that will seep into every area of our town. Which in a town like Boulder City means every area of our life.

However their is another path, and I believe all on the council, including Harhay and McManus will follow it. It is a path of working together, finding compromise and realizing that the balance both McManus and Harhay bring can be a good thing. Such compromises will mean a lot of votes that will offend the hardline base, on both sides, that don't want compromise. Such votes will take time,  leadership and courage. It means proposing new ideas that might end up being unpopular. This path is harder, it takes engaged Councilmen and Women willing to take risk. It takes engaged citizens willing to study and look at new ideas. It takes understanding the opposite side instead of insulting them. It is the path I believe in. It is the path we in Boulder City can and I believe will follow.

I am grateful for all who ran both those who won and those who did not. I am grateful for all who were willing to speak their mind whether their issue was accepted or rejected. Let's believe these next two years will be the best years Boulder City has ever seen and then let's work to make it so.


  1. Washington DC should follow your advice.

  2. And yet for some reason they never call asking for it.