2018 primary results

From my perspective, the 2018 Democratic primary results can be written up as more good than bad, at all events in the local campaigns in which I was most invested.

That is, we did well enough.

I was invested in a number of campaigns, to a greater or lesser extent. My top priority was keeping Mike Skindell in office; he faces a November opponent, but so far so good. It’s also exciting that Nickie Antonio is on her way to the Ohio Senate, an outcome that seemed in serious doubt well into Tuesday evening.

Election night with primary winners Antonio & Skindell

Not all the campaigns that I worked on succeeded, certainly. (Issue 1 succeeded and succeeded big, which is cool, although others certainly worked harder on it the past month or so than I did.) If one counts up the county central committee candidates for whom I created literature (and in one case did some volunteering), six out of 10 have won, and a seventh has tied*. But no matter how you count it, a number of good candidates for whom I did my best still lost.

This stuff is honestly just hard, I think.

If there’s any one point I want to emphasize about any of these campaigns, for the record, it’s that we worked really hard on the Skindell campaign. For anyone who wants to say that this race was never really going to be in danger, that’s easy to say now.

But let’s remember, being a sitting state senator didn’t help our candidate in his most recent run for office, the 2015 Lakewood mayor’s race. This time he had an injury that severely restricted in-person voter contact. Our opponent not only had the endorsement of the county party, but an unprecedented promotion of that endorsement in repeated sample-ballot mailings. We stuck to a positive campaign; he did a hit piece. Our financial resources will probably prove to have been smaller. In March, Capitol Letter listed this a race to watch and declared that our opponent “has momentum.”

Monday morning quarterbacks can waive that all away, now, but we sure didn’t. Our candidate worked very hard; some great volunteers worked very hard; I personally pretty much let my life go to the wall the past several weeks in order to do everything I could for this campaign while still helping out others.

Figuring out how to readjust, now, is frankly jarring.

But for the moment it could be an awful lot worse.

* Update: she won the tiebreaker, so officially I went 7/10 for the central committee candidates I helped.

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