IS IT TRUE November 7, 2012


The Mole #??

IS IT TRUE November 7, 2012

IS IT TRUE that the people of Vanderburgh County and the City of Evansville went to the polls yesterday and dealt the referendum to consolidate local government a solid defeat by a 2 to 1 margin?…we have not examined these results precinct by precinct to see if there were any wards or precincts that actually voted YES but that will be an interesting part of the autopsy of this four year “machine” supported saga to “reorganize” the County into a single government unit?…there have been promises and threats coming out of the YES camp for the last several week along the lines of “you folks better vote YES or we will annex you against your will”?…those who would start any annexation efforts at this point had better take this thrashing at the ballot box as a firm warning that elected or even appointed officials who support annexation of anything in the short term will do so at their own political peril?

IS IT TRUE that there are also a number of elected officials that just gave their future opponents the political nuclear weapon they will use to defeat them?…a future opponent of the rabid supporters of consolidation like Mayor Lloyd Winnecke, Sheriff Eric Williams, Commissioners Marsha Abell and Joe Kiefer, former Mayor Jonathan Weinzapfel, and assorted but less recognized others will be pounded again and again over support for a referendum that clearly stuck a middle finger in the face of the will of the people of Vanderburgh County?…some of these people just got their second poison issue as three of these (Winnecke, Weinzapfel, and Abell) were also in on the secret meeting to take away the Homestead Tax Credit?…in most places this combination of arrogant and misinformed positions would eliminate them from ever being elected to anything?…if you add that to the Ford Center that is now losing money which was orchestrated by the same cast of characters and their surrogates in a city that thinks, feels, and remembers this elite club would now be political roadkill?…the future will come and one of these people will run for something as they always seem to do?…that then and only then will we find out if Evansville is a city that thinks, feels, and has a memory?

IS IT TRUE that the governance of the City of Evansville needs to look at the overwhelming rejection of consolidation as a mandate to heal the City of the malaise that is obvious to any informed observer?…the easy money route to paying for the City of Evansville’s legacy problems just slammed shut?…the problems like having a horrible plan that offered nearly no savings and spared numerous sacred cows is the principle reason that consolidation failed?…there are a group of young Chamber of Commerce types who vocally supported consolidation who may live to fight another day politically when they are in their fifties but in the near term they will be judged by the company they kept and will have a big target on their back in any political endeavor they attempt to seek?

IS IT TRUE that outside of the consolidation effort the people of Evansville and Vanderburgh County substantially voted for the STATUS QUO?…from the County Council, to the School Board, to the Coroner’s Offices, to the Judgeships the people of Evansville went for the incumbents lock, stock, and barrel?…this seems to indicate that whatever Evansville and Vanderburgh County are right now is how the people of this part of the world intend to keep it?…on a national level Vanderburgh County did not go with the STATUS QUO giving President Obama only 43.7% of their votes to 54.3% for Republican Mitt Romney and Libertarian Gary Johnson a relatively high share of 2.8%.

IS IT TRUE that the country on the other hand did vote to give President Barack Obama a new four year contract with a slim margin with only 50.3% of the popular vote with the final electoral totals still not established at the time of this writing?…this means that 49.7% voted for someone other than President Obama and kept the House of Representative in Republican hands while leaving the Senate in Democrat hands but with substantially less than 60 votes needed to ram things through along party lines?…the divides and differences in different regions of the country are quite stark?…in the South and the Grain Belt you can easily travel over 2,000 miles without going through a state that even cast 40% of their votes for President Obama?…it is clear that the United States is a sharply divided nation and that Republican members of the Congress will have the strong support of their constituencies to oppose President Obama’s will for the next four years?…as was stated in yesterday’s IS IT TRUE we are poised for four years of no legislation and endless executive fiat?…this is sad but true?


  1. Looks like Auditgate had a role in defeating unification. Glad that the County didn’t hand over everything to the fools that can’t reconcile their books!

  2. The city council should start nxt. Monday’s meeting with plans to move city elections to even years. Make the next election for 3 years, instant savings of 225,000. A substancial savings every 4 years. In my opinion I’d like it sooner, but I’d like a re-call election now.

  3. So as voters we chose to keep everything from the top down the same, call it voting for the status quo or just keeping the devil we know it is all the same. I’m delighted with some of the results and disheartened by others, but as the dust settles on election 2012 we all have but one choice and that’s to continue to work for what we believe in.

    While I’m very happy that Vandygov failed once again I have to feel sorry for Mr Davis, he spent his entire time working to stop consolidation and not running for his office…he was successful in what he was working towards that being stopping the consolidation crowd but failed to keep his job.

    He really deserves a big round of applause from all the taxpayers both in the county and city, his unselfish dedication to a principle he believed in cost him his job but probably saved all of us millions of dollars IMHO.

    Of course it is JMHO

    • I disagree. He got a ton of press and continued name recognition from opposing Reorg. It is true that by taking a stand on that issue, he likely alienated “Yes” people, but when 2/3 voted the way he advocated, I find it hard to believe that campaign hurt him.

      • Assuming all voters are informed voters understanding both the candidates and the issues they are voting for/against…then you may have a point, my opinion is most common voters don’t spend much if any time informing themselves but rely on media talking heads and their circle of friends to formulate their votes never really having a firm grasp of the candidates or issues. When you have the majority of folks in our country that feel we are heading in the wrong direction but yet vote the same people back in it makes you really stop and wonder just what in the hell are people thinking?

        In the case of consolidation Mr Davis seemed to me to get more face time or press time than any other opponent of the issue, but that could just be where I get my news from, I watch very little TV but he seemed to me to be the front man or spokesperson on opposing the issue, I don’t recall ever seeing him talking about the race for county treasurer…maybe he thought he had that in the bag and could devote all his attention to the reorganization fight….even his posts here on the CCO were about consolidation not his political race unless I missed one?

        Again it’s JMHO

        • My point is, I think the assessment he spent too much time on CORE and not enough on his Treasurer race is a bit off target. I do see where in theory it could be construed as a risky move, but the fact that 2/3 of voters shot it down means his stand was probably a safe one, particularly if you consider his opponent was also against reorg.

          Rick Davis was campaigning for his Treasurer position by opposing reorg. As a strategy, it was probably more of an afterthought, but it was a sound one, IMO.

          Any time you are getting your name out there in a stance one way or another, it is a signature of who you are. He was defining himself and his candidacy for Treasurer as someone who will stand up to the people representing the “Yes” forces at the same time he was opposing reorg.

          It was a broader marketing campaign that nearly got him reelected. I believe it would have worked had the issue of his job attendance not come out when it did. In a coin toss race, it made the difference.

          • Yeah I see your point, so in that regard I would guess that Mr Parke finished the Democrats business from the last election cycle causing the “Death Blow” to Mr Davis by requesting a FOIA count on the door scans then making the info public on the pretense of helping his candidate (which it did help using your analogy)(a win win situation!).

            Yeah…I have a warped way of looking at things sometimes…lol! But the contract (bounty) is now complete, Davis got the lesson Weinzappfel promised, and the sun will still come up tomorrow. 🙂

            I did make the comment on here last year after the mayoral election that if I were Mr Davis I’d be looking for a private sector job…hope he read that and took it to heart, the job market in Evansville has been better.


  4. I too want to give Rick Davis a big THANK YOU for saving us from Consolidation. I’m sad that it cost him his job though. The people of Vanderburgh County has lost a loyal, dedicated, honest Treasurer who worked very hard to save the tax payers dollars. THANK YOU RICK DAVIS. We hope to continue to see you do wonderful things for our community!

    • That didn’t cost him his job. How do you figure that? He was overwhelmingly on the correct side of that issue from a numbers perspective. He lost simply because Susan Kirk was a good candidate for the office and the margin was thin.

      I’d say the issue over his job attendance was the death blow. Might have tipped the balance.

      • I agree. He was a great advocate for CORE and a poor advocate for his job. He failed to defend himself from the attacks leveled against him.

  5. The best possible outcome from a libertarian perspective happened last night… Obama’s victories in battleground States last night by slim margins, often by less than the totals of Gary Johnson, is an in-your-face testament to how much the Republican Party needs to retool to include the libertarian perspective in many areas. If they continue to spit in the eyes of Ron Paul supporters and marginalize this voting niche, they will continue to lose. THAT is the message the Party should take from last night.

    Obama’s second term will be largely a lame duck. Republicans control Congress and have a large minority in the Senate that denies a 2/3 majority needed to ram legislation through.

    A divided, inefficient government, as Rick Davis so keenly pointed out recently, is sometimes for the best! I look forward to 4 years of fighting and bickering and nothing getting done. Beats the hell out of bi-partisan support of raping us all.

    • Rick Davis is a good man and has nothing to be ashamed about. He lost to a very good opponent. We need for him to stay active in local Democrat politics and run for another City position.

      • A two-time loser? Are you kidding? He couldn’t get elected dog catcher. I’m so happy he lost I could pee my pants.

  6. Rick is “paying the price” for being a mediocre candidate and office holder. Of all the incumbents that ran, he is the one that lost. That tells you a lot about what people think of him and his political future.

    Consolidation went down with or without Rick. It’s clear that he is not a leader. You can tell that because folks are not following him.

    • I disagree with this. Although Susan Kirk got my vote for Treasurer, Rick Davis is someone I think deserves to be kept around. Anyone who defies his own party machinery has my respect, and he was a good advocate for CORE.

      I hope he stays active in local politics. I doubt we’ve seen the last of Rick Davis.

    • I completely disagree with the premise stated in the first sentence.

      Rick Davis is not a mediocre candidate. He has proven repeatedly that he can put together a formidable grass roots organization capable of electing him and other candidates for whom he mobilizes his organization.

      Moreover, he is a good officeholder who as County Treasurer has been very proactive, instituted novel ideas, served his constituents honestly and capably.

      With regard to not having a following, you also are way off target. He has a rabid following.

      So, what the hell happened? Well, here’s my “forgive quickly whether or not you ever forget theory of politics:” A politician should never alienate his or her inherent/given voter base whether for personal vendettas or on behalf of a supporter’s old grudge match. If one does that, then one has to go out and make up the difference by appealing to the opponent’s inherent/given voter base, or in the case of a Democrat, swing Republican leaning independents over to vote for you, the Democrat. That’s a tough row to hoe in Vanderburgh County.

  7. I disagree with the CCO’s opinion that consolidation’s failure will result in a backlash against Winnecke, Kiefer, Williams, et al. While it may become a minor issue going forward, I think the damage would have been great if the county residents had been forced to vote for Mayor and the other offices. Winnecke still remains popular in the city itself, and Williams is a good sheriff.

    • I don’t know who you are or what circles you move in, but everyone I talk to thinks Winnecke is a failure.

    • I wouldn’t called it a “whiplash effect”. It is called “just desserts”. What goes around comes around. They will have to pay the piper.

      Don’t forget, they said we needed fresh, brighter and innovative minds with good ideas to run local government and take Evansville forward. Replacing the politicians who supported reorganization will be the first step in that direction.

  8. While the editorial for today offers basically sound observations of yesterday’s Yes/No referendum from the point of view of the voting taxpayer, let me offer a few other observations, just for thought and consideration … mostly just some data and a few thoughts to ponder:

    “IS IT TRUE that there are also a number of elected officials that just gave their future opponents the political nuclear weapon they will use to defeat them?…a future opponent of the rabid supporters of consolidation like Mayor Lloyd Winnecke, Sheriff Eric Williams, Commissioners Marsha Abell and Joe Kiefer, former Mayor Jonathan Weinzapfel, and assorted but less recognized others will be pounded again and again over support for a referendum that clearly stuck a middle finger in the face of the will of the people of Vanderburgh County?”

    Joe Kiefer, original poster child for consolidation, and unopposed candidate for County Commissioner Dist. 1: 52,155 votes

    Steve Melcher, included “and Vote NO!” on all his signs and campaign ads, and unopposed candidate for County Commissioner, Dist. 3: 50,108 votes.

    Keep in mind, the entire county and city votes for commissioners even though they serve from an individual district.

    Also, for your consideration: There were two countywide candidates for constitutional offices who openly and strongly supported and promoted Vote No! and who lost to opponents who in one instance tacidly supported Vote No, and in the other instance did not state an opinion one way or the other. These two candidates appear to have been overcome by a ground swell of Republican voters from outside the city limits, most of whom we may assume (until the precinct by precinct data becomes available) came out to Vote NO!

    Additionally, there was a countywide candidates for constitutional office who consistently from the beginning openly opposed consolidation but who lost to an opponent who at first stated support for consolidation on a piece of widely distributed Yes! literature, then switched in mid stream to support Vote No.

    This phenomenon crossed party lines, and did not appear to always be weighted in favor of the obvious Republican ground swell. For example there was a candidate for countywide constitutional office who has been an officer in a PAC which endorsed CORE’s position and had yard signs printed and posted with their insignia forming the “O” in Vote No. He lost to a candidate who I don’t recall ever stated an opinion on the referendum.

    To compare the win/lose differentials that flip flopped back and forth between parties and individual candidate’s stand on consolidation, you may veiw the vote total data here:

    There’s more to consider. I offer one opinion from 30+ years political experience though: Voter memory is what it is, short term mostly, and very forgiving in the long term.

    • That link has NO numbers on it. Is there another website to get the local precinct counts?

      • When I click that link, I see the vote totals for yesterday’s Vanderburgh County results. If you want local precinct counts, make your request to the Clerk of the Courts.

      • I do not know what you mean the election was a status quo from a local perspective. There was 9 Vanderburgh County positions on the ballot. The Republicans pickup 2 positions formally held by Democrats–Treasurer and Surveyor. They never lost any spots. These 2 additions are huge wins for the Republicans.

        • Where did I say the election was a status quo from a local perspective. I didn’t say any such thing. I hope nothing I said even implied that. And I didn’t say Republicans lost an office. They did however lose a race or two, didn’t they? And yes, the local Democrat party indeed lost the Treasurer’s and Surveyor’s offices. But that was not the point of my post at all. I was posting to stimulate thought or discussion about whether the assumption is correct by the editor that future fate of certain officials is forecast by yesterday’s vote on the consolidation referendum. I’m going to assume your reply was to someone else’s post and got misplaced to this margin.

  9. Rick Davis:
    Thank you for your service to the people and the city of Evansville. Your work in the treasurer’s office and
    your successful efforts to defeat the “reorganization”
    will be appreciated for many years to come.
    You’ll also be a scare name to the Powers that want to be for many years.
    Watch out or we’ll RICK DAVIS you!!

  10. What a great job Jenn Schulteis and Jack McNeely did over at Democratic Hq. They managed to lose two more democrat offices. Great job!!

  11. A CCO poll on how many people were approached by local democrat politicians to vote against Rick Davis would be interesting. I was approached by 2 elected democrats and 1 heavy duty supporter. I know there was a re education process going on. The democrats have worked hard to get the vote out for 2 republican candidates recently.

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