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E-Mails…#11….MACMILLAN AND THE CIC….

Greetings, All,
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>As an addendum to Bob Roberts’ excellent summary by precinct of final results (net of provisional ballots) of the January 29 LBTS municipal elections, I have been trying to pull together data on turnout and voting type, and comparing the precinct-by-precinct returns with those from 2006 to see what trends or other notable phenomena I could identify. The data I collected are attached; my tentative conclusions follow.
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>The data on results by vote type are interesting in that they do not appear to support the hypothesis that a significant number of early voters were denied an opportunity to vote for mayor. On the contrary, the statistics show that — both town-wide and in three out of four precincts – more early votes were cast for mayor than for either of the two district commissioners. Thus, there seems little basis for a challenge to the election results based on some reports of early-voting machines that did not offer an opportunity to vote for mayor.
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>Data on turnout show an impressive 57.3-persent voter turnout in LBTS even net of possible provisional votes still to be posted on the SOE’s website. That is far ahead of Broward County and Statewide averages of only about 38 percent each. It would appear to indicate that LBTS voters were much more interested in their town-commission elections than were average Florida citizens in either property-tax referendum or presidential preference primary.
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>One might well take that as an indication that LBTS municipal elections should rather be left in March than, as the old-guard commission favored, being shifted to November in non-presidential election years. March municipal elections will permit the many LBTS voters concerned with local affairs to concentrate on local candidates and issues rather than being distracted by the multitude of state and local candidates and issues which – in addition to congressional elections – have traditionally clogged the November ballot.
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>The alternating November-January municipal election scheme proposed by the Old Guard also results in a glaring inequity. One Mayor would serve a term of only 21 months, but the next would serve 27 months, almost one third longer!
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>Comparison of precinct voting results of the January 29 election with those of the 2006 elections (data summaries of which are also attached) yields a number of interesting conclusions. CIC-endorsed candidates have always fared best in old-town Precinct Q030 and worst in north-beach ocean-front condo Precinct Q032. This year they did slightly less well in Q030, while Stuart Dodd actually did better in Q032. Unsuccessful candidate Wick did less well in Q030 and much worse in Q032. (See Bob Roberts’ data summary.)
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>Given that old-town Q030 contains 40% of the Town’s voters and can be expected to give our candidates the best support, they should certainly not take that area for granted, but should perhaps, as Chris Chiari had advised, give it even greater attention than the other areas. Possible inadequate attention to old-town voters is suggested by the fact that, while voter participation in all parts of town was up sharply this year over 2006, the increase in old town was only 60% as great as in the rest of the town. The precinct with the highest turnout this year was Q031 (Bel Air, palm Club, Terra mar, etc.), where CIC candidates actually fared less well (43.3% and 48.4%) than their counterparts in 2006). That again suggests the need for greater attention to campaigning in old Town.
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>The most striking improvement over 2006, and the precinct where CIC candidates appear to have won the election, was Precinct Q033 – primarily the Sea Ranch Club, but also including Starlight Towers. In addition to providing a voter turnout of 57 percent, Q033 gave the CIC commissioner candidates approvals of 60.2% and 56.7% respectively, compared with only 47.6% and 45.8% approval given to McIntee and Silverstone in 2006.
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>The high voting for Dodd and Clottey appears due both to the highly successful strategy of publicizing the old-guard’s Palm-Club sewer scheme and the extent to which the cost would be borne by condo unit owners, and the success of Larry McGuinness in alerting Sea Ranch Club residents to the sewer fiasco, and also to the efforts of numerous activists, including CIC members Barbara Cole and Bob & Carol Dickman as well as non-members Marvin and Linda Convissar and Norma Fayer (galvanized at our SRC meet-the-challengers night) to spread the word throughout the three SRC buildings and get those voters to the polls. A similar successful effort was applied at Starlight Towers by Larry Campbell and Hildy Brenner. I am convinced those efforts were critical to our candidates’ success.
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>Also worth noting is the fact that Stuart did slightly better than had Jim in Q032 (the north-beach ocean-front condos) while Birute Ann fared worse there than had Jerry. My guess is that may be due to the fact that Stuart made the inequity of the Palm-club Sewer deal a main plank in his campaign, stressing that it was wrong and that condo unit-owners would be paying through the nose, whereas Birute took a more balanced approach, stressing the need first to “get the data” suppressed by Baldwin and Clark’s SBCA before deciding what to do. (That is not a criticism of Birute. Her position was logical and balanced, and no one could be sure in advance – we all had different opinions – which tactic would prove the more successful.)
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>Finally, I compared the results of polling on the CIC’s 3-over-1-story-townwide charter-amendment referendum in the March 2006 election (when the amendment passed narrowly) and in November 2006, when Parker’s “anti-town-wide-height-limit was defeated by a more comfortable margin. What is most striking from that comparison is that, while support for 3-over-1 from Old Town remained constant near a comfortable 62.7 percent, voting for the CIC position swing from slightly negative to slightly positive in Q031 (Bel air, etc) and from sharply negative to positive in Q033 (Sea Ranch Club, etc.). And while voting in north-beach ocean-front Precinct Q032 remained negative, as one might have expected, approval of 3-over-1 town-wide nevertheless improved there sharply from 35.8% to 44.0%!
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>I believe those swings can only be explained by the growth of the CIC under Chairman McIntee and the efforts of CIC members to spread the word as to the true facts, and also to the publicity given the CIC position, while debunking the great $21-million BJH-claim hoax, in the pages of By-the-Sea Times.
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>I hope some addressees may find the above interesting, and that it may be of some value to CIC endorsed candidates in the future

JOHN THOMPSON

Start with ….scoop….Duplicity…but by whom?….

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