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Diana Davila Martinez

One week of early voting in the District H runoff

I did my civic duty on Friday at Moody Park, early in the morning – according to the sign-in sheet, I was the fifth person to vote that day. That makes me one of 1302 people to cast their ballot, in person or by mail, so far in this runoff. Unless the weekend totals are a complete bust, I imagine we’ll have on the order of 2000 votes by close of business Tuesday, which means my original projection is almost certain to be low, quite possibly very low. It’s not out of the question to me at this point that the runoff could get almost as many voters as the May election. Probably not, but if we’re at 2000 votes on Wednesday, an equivalent amount on the 13th is conceivable.

This week we saw the first example of negative campaigning, as Maverick Welsh sent out a couple of mailers that said Ed Gonzalez was part of the “same tired system” and represents “politics as usual”. This has made some folks, like Stace, unhappy with Welsh. I have three things to say about this. One, I thought these mailers were pretty generic as far as attacks go – I definitely thought the stuff sent out in 2003 about Adrian Garcia was worse. As such, they didn’t particularly bother me. Two, the language used in these pieces strikes me as the kind of thing one candidate says when the other candidate has the support of much of the political establishment, including the previous occupant of the office. At its core, the message is “Vote for change”, which when you consider that seven months ago the people in District H voted like crazy for Adrian Garcia for Sheriff, may perhaps not be an optimal strategy. And finally, along those lines, some other late in the game attacks against Garcia made by his 2003 runoff opponent Diana Davila Martinez seem to have benefited him more than they harmed him, at least in my neck of the woods. We’ll know soon enough if history repeats itself.

Ed Gonzalez kickoff event

Ed Gonzalez will have a campaign kickoff event for District H next Wednesday, February 11, at Irma’s Restaurant downtown from 5:30 to 7 PM. You can get all the details here (PDF).

We’re rapidly approaching the filing deadline for the May special election, and from there it’s going to be an absolute sprint to the finish line – well, the first finish line – in May. As we know, there are seven declared candidates so far, with two more in the wings. That can all change, but for sure this is going to be a crowded field, and everyone in the running is going to be hard-pressed to get their message out. I’ll do whatever I can to pass along event announcements and other news, and of course I’ll be working on doing interviews with everyone. If you’re a candidate or associated with one, and haven’t contacted me, please do so I can make sure I get your information as well.

Along those lines, the Greater Heights Democratic Club is planning a District H candidate forum for March 19 at 7 PM, location to be determined. They do not have current contact information for Lupe Garcia, Rick Rodriguez, Yolanda Navarro Flores, or Diana Davila Martinez. If you are one of these people or know how to contact one of them, please drop me a note with an email address and/or cell number so Kevin Hoffman and the GHDC folks can get in touch with you. Thanks very much

Finally, I note that Gonzalez was at that Heights crime prevention townhall meeting, and posted a report about it on his blog. So there you have it.