Thursday, September 26, 2013

40 Days Out

It's 40 days until the city election. If this was a general election we'd be starting to vote today, but city elections don't have that same time requirement. There's not a set date, but in this county, this year, we'll be starting Wednesday October 2.

So instead of starting the final push, we're just seeing the dynamics take shape. Gregg Hennigan has the must-read of the month on Coralville's election:
A Coralville City Council candidate says she was offered $20,000 for her campaign from a Republican political operative from Polk County and a representative of local group critical of Coralville’s financial practices.

Laurie Goodrich told The Gazette she turned down the offer and felt some strings likely were attached to it.

Three other City Council candidates and a person running for mayor in the town of 20,000 residents confirmed they are receiving help from one or both of the people whom Goodrich met with, but they denied getting any financial assistance.
For those keeping score, the superPAC slate is Matt Adam for mayor and Dave Petsel, Chris Turner and Mark Winkler. Some Iowa City lefties will no doubt back this all-GOP ticket; they've made a habit of it the last couple elections. (Bobby Kaufmann, John Etheredge and Phil Hemingway say thanks.)

In Iowa City all the candidates are technically* Democrats but there's a pretty clear left-right, outside-inside feel. And the old 80s-90s left, a splintered shadow of its old self but still significant, puts its stamp of approval on the challengers with a personal invite from the mayor of the progressives:
Please plan to attend a Meet and Greet for Iowa City City Council Candidates Kingsley Botchway, Rockne Cole and Royceann Porter!
When: Thursday, October 10 from 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Where: The Home of Karen Kubby
Back during Kubby's decade on the city council, there was a sense of solidarity between the lefty "grown ups" and the students. That's faded, in part because the progressives have aged to the point that they've forgotten what it's like to be young (that Half Century of Deeth is coming up yet this year) and in part because they've lost their old libertarian streak.

Take the third round of the bar admission age fight, which had become too much the defining "student" issue. Too many on the left are seeing it as a public health fight. I think the gateway drug here was the statewide smoking ban. Maybe that's good policy, but anti-smokers (as opposed to non-smokers) could barely get two sentences out before their personal loathing of smokers became obvious.

So it is with the bar admission age. Personal loathing of obnoxious "frat boys" and Vodka Samms seems to trump the rights issues, so lefties juggle the cognitive dissonance of an 18 voting age and a 21 drinking age and accept the University's in loco parentis party line, reiterated by Sally Mason this week.

With the left sidelines or hostile, leave it to the libertarians to carry the ball.

Speaking of carrying the ball, KCRG's Mark Carlson notes:
Recent History lesson: 2010 was also the last time 21 Bar was on the ballot. The 19 campaign was making headway - remember, they only lost 52% to 48% -and pointing out (correctly) that the University was hypocritically being tougher on students than on older townie and alumni fans. So UI reacted - and over-reacted, as townie backlash started to threaten the University's Precious. So they eased up after a couple games.

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