Monday, September 14, 2009

The Salt Lake Tribune Predicts a Low Turnout at Tomorrow's Northern Utah Primary Elections - UPDATED

Citizens who vote in the primaries have MUCH MORE relative individual political juice, however

Here's an interesting story from today's Salt Lake Tribune, geared for those Utah voters who might be a mite lackadaisical about showing up tomorrow to vote in the several Northern Utah municipal primary elections, such as the one happening in Emerald City tomorrow:
Primary contests abound but turnout could be grim
Here's the setup from SLTrib reporter Derek P. Jensens's opening paragraphs:
There is a Utah election in two days -- really.
Sure, there are few high-profile contests -- no statewide races, no governor on the ballot, not even a Salt Lake City mayoral matchup -- but scores of municipal hopefuls from Logan to Springville to St. George face do-or-die primaries Tuesday.
Eight of Utah's 10 biggest cities have nonpartisan mayoral chases this year -- some with primaries Tuesday. And two of the four Salt Lake City Council chairs up for grabs in 2009 have field-winnowing contests this week.
Tuesday's primary survivors will advance to the Nov. 3 general election.
But in this off-, off-year election cycle, turnout is expected to be meager at best. That may mean, despite the cliché, that every vote truly counts. And that includes early balloting, which, after last fall's presidential flood, has subsided to a trickle.
And here's your Weber County Forum-style neck-snapping segue:

Your blogmeister checked with the lovely Tracey today, of the Ogden City Recorder's office. (The City Recorder's Office will be running tomorrow's Primary & the November 3 General Elections, BTW.)

Here's what she told me about the 2007 Ogden City Municipal Primary Election:

"The 2007 primary election generated 16.8% of the registered Ogden resident vote."

This shows it pays off to vote in the Ogden primaries, people. The voter turnout in the 2007 General Election was , BTW, more like 47%.

Let's have no excuses, WCF readers. Browbeat your friends, families and foes. Tell then all to buckle up on their on morals, and to vote "no on the Big Spending Godfreyites" in the 9/15/09 primary, please. Citizens who vote in the primaries have MUCH MORE relative individual political juice than in the better-attended General Election.

The fewer people who vote in the primary, the more political muscle we lumpencitizens will actually have relatively, so long as hard-core WCF voters show up at the polls to vote. And if politically alert WCF readers and their friends vote to hamstringVal Southwick's very bestest friend... that reminder is all good!

The Godfreyite real estate corporo-welfarists (the people with all the lawnsigns) laugh at Ogden City voters behind their backs, because they have tons of money to throw at this primary election.

Don't let these neoCON nitwits get the last laugh!

Update 9/15/09 8:00 a.m.: The Standard-Examiner continues with the "voter apathy" theme this morning, with this Bryon Saxton story, reporting that Weber County officials expect a 25% voter turnout in the various Weber County cities which are holding primary election polling today. Strangely, Mr. Saxton reports (quoting Weber County Assistant Elections Administrator Melanie Langford) that "County officials are unaware of any big primary races in any of the Weber County cities, ... nor are they aware of many contentious races," despite the major brouhaha which is shaping up in Ogden City. This leads us to conclude of course, that Weber County officials such as Ms. Langford surely must dwell in a cave on Mars, or some other remote venue like that.

Real Time Vote Tallies: And yes, gentle readers. Just as we've done in the past, we'll be posting a new article later this afternoon, with a link to Ogden City's live elections feed, so that Emerald City political wonks can monitor the real time vote tallies, straight from the Ogden City Recorder's counting room.


Jennifer Neil said...

I voted on the day I turned in my financial report - :) Now it's all y'all's turn!


Rockford J. said...

I wish TL Jennifer and Mr. Wolfgram well. I will be at the polls, you can be sure of that.

And so will most of my local aquintance.

Curmudgeon said...

Received an election mailer from Mr. Phipps this afternoon, touting his endorsement by Brandon Stephenson in case folks were wondering.... And he has the chutzpah to claim he's running as an independent voice for the Council.

Bill C. said...

What? Endorsed by Brandon Anally Stephenson but not Blain (cleaned and cured money) Johnson.

ozboy said...

Our very favorite Standard Examiner Ogden political beat reporter - Scott Schwepke - had a pretty good article up on the election in today's edition of the "Godfrey Apologizer" (aka Standard for those out of town readers) He takes just the opposite tack in relation to anticipated voter turn out. In it he quotes Dan Jones as follows:

"Dan Jones, owner of Dan Jones & Associates, a Salt Lake City market research and public opinion firm, said a survey conducted by his company has found unprecedented anger from respondents toward state and federal lawmakers over what they consider wasteful spending.

As a result, mayoral and city council races throughout Top of Utah may be attracting large numbers of candidates who believe the most effective place to begin tackling problems facing government is at the grass-roots level, Jones said.

"People understand the issues at the local level more than the state and national level," said Jones, who is a political science professor at the University of Utah.

"They can have more of an impact as it relates to them and their neighbors."

I hope that Jones and his angry citizen analysis are correct and that the known Godfreyites in tomorrow's election are well known to the electorate and that they are justifiably handed their hats at the polls.

Ah' hope springs eternal in the heart of this old Godfreyite critic!

Curmudgeon said...

Oz Boy:

You mean you don't think the taxpayers should pony up $400K in RAMP funds for a year round outdoor downtown popsicle? What are you, some kind of naysayer?

HAHAHA said...

I liked this explanation from this morning's Schwebke piece:

"Another reason some candidates may seek office is because, during tough economic times, serving on the city council can provide extra income, Mansell speculated.
The city council’s chairperson is paid $10,916 annually, the vice chairperson receives $9,860, and the remaining city council members get $8,803 a year."

A full-time job that pays about $1/hr.

Yep! That certainly explains it!

Another POS Schwebke puff piece, for sure.


marion said...

I would guess that Eight thousand a year has meant a lot to Stephens and Stevenson, I know it would to me.

Curmudgeon said...


And me. But should be noted that, if you're going to do the job right, it takes, minimum, between 20 and 30 hours a week, every week, week in and week out. But you're right: for most folks, including me, an additional 8K/yr is not to be sneezed at.

Curmudgeon said...

How late will the polls be open in Ogden? Coordinating driving several people to the polls and need to know when they close.

City worker said...

And these people make more than the legislature and we at the paper like to beat up the legislature. I mean they make a whooping 64 cents per hour, but hey they get all those free hamburger lunches that we all complain about. Boy I can't wait till I'm retired from my job so !
I can work 20 to 30 hours a week for a $1.00 an hour. It is tough all over.

Jennifer Neil said...


Polling places close at 8 p.m.

(found in candidtate election guide booklet, page 62, near the top)


Curmudgeon said...


Rafiki said...

I voted.

Snargle said...

Expecting low voter turnout for a primary election, is not news.

Jennifer Neil said...


Go vote, and prove them wrong.


LBJ said...

TLJ is my choice but whatever you do, DON'T VOTE FOR PHIPPS

Reader's Digest said...

Here's a paraphrase of Phipps's answers to the Sierra Club questionnaire:

1. We need to preserve our resources so commercial real estate brokers like me can exploit them.

2. I don't know what "zoning" means.

3. I know I'm supposed to say something nice about transit but I'm clueless about the current streetcar proposal.

4. After hesitating and judging the impact, I would vote to sell Mt. Ogden Golf Course for condo development.

5. I refuse to say whether we should encourage or discourage foothill development.

6. Blah blah blah infrastructure blah blah blah sustainability.

7. I wish Mayor Godfrey had complete control over the National Forest lands near Ogden.

8. Blah blah blah sustainable blah blah blah minimize impact blah blah blah environment.

Reader's Digest said...

Here's a paraphrase of Blair's answers to the Sierra Club questionnaire:

1. I've been around long enough to understand Ogden, and I plan to stay.

2. Zoning should protect natural assets. But despite my WSU degree, I don't know when to put a k on "new".

3. Gondola no. Streetcar or BRT yes.

4. Condos belong downtown, not on the golf course.

5. Development belongs downtown. The foothills are for trails.

6. I'm for recycling and water conservation.

7. Wilderness is somebody else's problem but we need to protect our foothills.

8. We should teach children to pick up litter.

Jennifer Neil said...

Reader's Digest,

to be fair, shouldn't you condense everyone's SC responses? Besides, the suspense is killing me!


Curmudgeon said...

Polling place changes:

Turned out, our polling place today is not the one listed on our voter registration cards. Imagine that. If you have your voter registration card, you might want to call the number on it and ask to verify your polling place. It may not be where the card says it is. Wasn't for us.

OgdenLover said...

You can double-check your polling place via the State of Utah's website.

My polling place changes every so often, so I checked out this site and it was correct for today's election.

Reader's Digest said...

Here's a paraphrase of Morris's answers to the Sierra Club questionnaire:

1. Despite my extensive government experience, I'm still young enough to have exuberance.

2. I'm a professional planner so boy do I know a lot about zoning. Commercial zoning should be based on form, not use. Residents should be allowed to raise chickens or bees.

3. I've read the 2005 transit study and agree that the system should go through the east central neighborhood.

4. I don't support developing condos on the golf course--that'd be nuts.

5. I'm for protecting foothills from development and I can name some specific ways of protecting them.

6. Ogden should pick up green waste and help residents conserve water.

7. Wilderness is somebody else's problem but I might have an opinion if I saw a specific proposal.

8. Streets should be designed for bikes and pedestrians, not just cars.

Reader's Digest said...

Here's a (belated) paraphrase of Neil's answers to the Sierra Club questionnaire:

1. I've been around a while and am really interested in government stuff.

2. I'm still getting up to speed on how zoning works.

3. Transit isn't convenient for students but more buses might be a worthwhile investment.

4. I don't think it's feasible or affordable to build condos on the golf course.

5. Open space should stay open or how will Ogden be an outdoor Mecca?

6. I have some vague ideas about utilities and water conservation.

7. Wilderness is somebody else's problem but sounds appropriate for an outdoor Mecca.

8. Code enforcement should go after developers first, and be reasonable with residents.

Reader's Digest said...

Interested readers are invited to summarize the Sierra Club questionnaires of Poulter and Roma. However, neither appears to be running a serious campaign. McNamara didn't even respond to the questionnaire.

Curmudgeon said...

Summaries are fun, but reading their actual replies will probably provide folks with a better idea of where the various candidates stand in re: the questions asked. Nothing like hearing it right from the horses mouth... so to speak... unedited, unamended. Giving them all a chance to post their replies, verbatim and without comment so voters could easily compare them was the idea.

Justin Morris said...

Thank you Reader's Digest; that was entertaining!

PPC Thayne said...

Vote for David Phipps and we'll give you a house.

Voted for Neil today said...

What a load of steaming crap, Readers Digest.

And here we have Mr. Morris patting you on the back.

I'll reveal that I voted for Ms. Neil today, because I had a gut feelingt Mr. Morris was slightly too immature for the seat B job.

My initial instincts are now confirmed.


Justin Morris said...

And being entertained is equivalent to maturity.

Actually, I was most entertained by Reader's Digest's summary of my responses.

Jennifer Neil said...

Speaking of being entertained: Blue Man Group is on Channel 17 right now ...


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