Minnesota's in the Middle

All things Minnesota politics

Friday, June 23, 2006

Pre convention update

First off a reminder candidates for Governor Peter Hutchinson and Pam Ellison will appear on Almanac tonight at 7.

Everything looks good for tomorrow with the possible exception of the weather, although a 70% chance of rain still means there is a 30% chance we won't see a drop of rain all day, and the forecast still indicates the morning will see the worst of it. I really don't know what’s going to happen with the US Senate race at this point. Jim Haviland sent out a nice 5 page letter yesterday, it's all the same stuff from his web site but some delegates might appreciate getting something in the mail. Overall I would say Robert Fitzgerald is running the most viable campaign. Many delegates might not worry to much about doing well in the US Senate race as it is an extreme long shot so they may go more on personal feel then what they think other voters might do. IRV is being used so it will come down to a 2 way race, and it should be relatively close. It could be that after the first ballot one candidate has 53-55% of the vote and the other is willing to concede, but I wouldn't bet on anyone getting 60% on the first ballot.

For predictions sake I'll say prior to the run off Fitzgerald will receive 56% to Haviland 41% and Williams 3% which should get Fitzgerald close enough to 60% after the Williams votes are awarded for Haviland to concede.

The real interesting dynamic is how Pam Ellison’s campaign will play. There are going to be many long time delegates that don't want another "liberal" or that feel the wrong people have to much power in this party, and will reject the direction party leadership appears to be headed in. I don't think Pam Ellison is the perfect candidate to take advantage of this dynamic, but it will exist in larger #'s then some people expect, if the Hutchinson campaign did not bring in around 200 delegates under 60% would have been a possibility, but with his supporters behind him Hutchinson should end up around 80%

The other big # will be the crowd. As of Monday over 300 had signed up for the fundraiser and over 500 delegates are out there. The media hits in the last day or two should help. The #'s to hope for are 1000 for the convention and 500 for the fundraiser. If it doesn't rain it should be in that range.

With the weather and the strong desire to see Fitzgerald endorsed there is a lot to worry about, but I'm pretty optimistic on both ends. Should be a great day, hope to see you there.

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