Thursday, July 07, 2005

On the Trail - Week 11

Going to start a weekly post counting down to the September 13 primary - talk from the campaign trail.

Campaigns are preparing for the Lagrange St. Festival this weekend. There are plenty of Ford signs up throughout the 4th ward - historically a stronghold of reliably Democratic Polish and African-American voters. Keith Wilkowski's headquarters is at the crossroads of the "Polish Village" Dexter & Lagrange. Tonight the windows sport his new blue and yellow yard sign. A few Carty signs have sprouted up here and there - but I understand the bulk of his effort is gathering the signatures on petitions due next Friday. Mayoral candidates need 750 signatures from registered voters. Traditionally, campaigns turn in close to the legal limit: 1500 signatures. Often a few wrong addresses or unregistered people will sign a petition, and the Board of Election staff won't count them. Occasionally, very bad things happen to a candidates petitions....

Heard today that Toledo Council candidate D. Michael Collins turned in his petitions with some incomplete information, which could threaten his place on the Sept. 13 ballot. He's running as an independent or maybe a Republican - haven't seen anything printed or a yard sign yet. I think he can go out and gather more signatures on fresh petitions and refile before next Friday's deadline, or he can appeal to the Board itself at the next BoE meeting. Either way, you try to get it right the first time, and you want the BoE to work with candidates to get them ON the ballot. If someone is willing to run for office, even Republicans shouldn't get bounced over technicalities.

Speaking of bouncing off the ballot: give credit to Allan Cox for pointing out that Carty Finkbeiner plead guilty to an Ethics law violation when he was Mayor, realized a $10,000 profit from Owens Corning's purchase of his condo, and his failure to publicly report the gain. Cox's interpretation of the Toledo Municipal Code and Charter suggests Finkbeiner ineligible to hold public office again. I remember Finkbeiner being very concerned about a "game ender" leading up to the 97 race - this could have been it. Mayor Ford's Law Director, Barb Herring, I understand signed off on an interpretation of the TMC that DOES allow Carty to run. Nice try Allan, but we'll beat Carty at the ballot box.

Council candidate Karen Shanahan (D) did a nice job Saturday at the Harvard Circle block party - signs, stickers and tee shirts everywhere. She and her husband Rex are working hard and have great energy. She has a fundraiser coming up - it would be good chance to meet them. I'll post details in the afternoon.

Mayor Ford had a huge event at his headquarters earlier this week, his campaign is really ramping up - it was fun to watch his crew out work Carty & the Kest gang over the holiday weekend. Sure, Carty had an edge at Harvard Circle - Irish lives right there, Carty down River Road a bit. But at the fireworks later, Team Finkbeiner got smoked. Ford even had guys in a pick-up truck holding signs cruising Summit St. and Int'l Park. Ford has an effective cable spot running, as well.

Waiting to see something from Wilkowski. The "running man" gambit made for decent TV, and he'll be in great shape if he keeps it up throughout the campaign. But besides the two signs in the windows of his office on Lagrange, haven't seen any signs in the old Polish neighborhoods.

Books closed on 6/30 for campaign finance reports. Our reports are due at the Board of Elections later in July, and become a public record anyone can access. It's always interesting to see who gave what to who, how much candidates have raised, etc. Council gets paid $27,500 a year. I probably raised and spent double that in 2003 to win the seat. Some can spend more and lose, some can spend less and win - and vice versa.

I enjoy walking neighborhoods and talking with all sorts of people. The 4th Ward has been great this week. Took plenty of notes about alley clean-ups and nuisance houses. Also got good reviews on the street resurfacing and police presence. From kitchen tables, porches, side yards, and through car windows I talked and walked in the evenings. Even hit the BA Sportsman Club and The Lion's Den on Lagrange.


Blogger Dan said...

yep, the Carty folks seem to be outwitted. Too soon to tell how the public will repsond to remembering the full truth of his record such as making a profit from a political maneuver, sending hearing impaired people to the live by the airport, or his rage and 'Rocky" tactics against the owner of Pepe's.

plan to see me running ahead of the "running man" Keith Wilkowski. He's a good guy, but come on with the gimmick. Watch for me ahead of his pack with my Ford or Vasquez shirt on and see if they can keep up with little old Dan. Should be fun... Ford may be slow and deliberate, but his supporters are sprite, spirited, and spunky... just try and keep up. Gimmicks just don't compare to hard work and strategy. Watch for Mayor Ford to use steady pace to win this race.

Exciting stuff.

See you all at the Polish fest.

1:20 AM  
Blogger Lisa Renee said...

I didn't see one politican at the fireworks. Infact I thought that was kind of strange, but guess our area infront of Owens Corning wasn't "the" zone for it.

As one of the township bunch, I hope you have a fair election that results in the best candidate winning and when it is all over? There is still cooperation on all sides to do what is best for the city of Toledo. What you guys do does have an impact on us.

2:34 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The genisis dreamplex on
Reynolds wants to house homeless etc. just like the budget hotel it will further deteriorate the south end. Don't you live in the south end FS?

6:22 PM  

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