Friday, November 07, 2008

crunching some numbers from 11/4

We ended up with exactly 12,000 votes-- after getting 9,920 in 2006. Unfortunately, with 93,000 more voters this time (from 221K to 314K), that translated into a lower percentage: 3.8% this year vs. 4.5% in 2006.

Going into the campaign season, we thought this was a strong possibility: more voters, but a lower percentage-- given the higher voter turnout during presidential elections (especially this year). Beyond that, and to generalize, these voters are characterized by the relative excitement they have for the presidential election and the relative ignorance they have about the down-ticket offices.

As for specific counties, I'm a bit surprised that we received fewer votes in six of the 20 counties. (I thought they'd vote for me again in 2008 if they voted for me in 2006, but perhaps memories are short?) We increased our vote percentage in four counties (Dearborn, Floyd, Ripley and especially
Switzerland). Jackson and Brown were still our two best counties. Washington moved up to 3rd. Switzerland, with a significant radio campaign, moved from 18th to 4th. Perry and Spencer became our bottom two. (We got very little media coverage there and didn't purchase much media.)

Many people have asked whether I'm disappointed. Yes and no. I'm not disappointed with the way in which we ran the experiment. We did everything we could given the resources we had. We worked very hard and as far as I know, we worked smart. But of course, we were disappointed in the results. We wanted to win. If not win, then we wanted to hit double-digits and make a far bigger splash. But it is what it is.

Perhaps I turned off a lot of people with one of our TV ads. Perhaps people were somehow more prone to the (lame) "wasted vote" idea. Less media coverage of the race. Only one debate. Far less negativity from the other two. Perhaps, perhaps, perhaps. We'll never know. But I think the biggest thing, by far, is the limited extent to which people pay attention to politics. As I've often said, we're fortunate to live in a country where we don't need to pay much attention to politics-- and people take advantage of that. The problem, of course, is that we allow all sorts of shenanigans to go on.

What does the future hold for the 9th District, for the Libertarian Party, and for freedom? Stay tuned...

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

IDS election coverage

Nice coverage in a good overview article from Zina Kumok in the Indiana Daily Student...

A fight between two long-time rivals ended in a landslide Tuesday....

Sodrel conceded the race at about 9 p.m. Tuesday.

“I’m grateful to my family, friends and great volunteers that have supported me in this race,” Sodrel said in a statement. “I have known victory, and I have known defeat. I am at peace with the outcome.”

Hill said in a press release that he was grateful to be chosen again.

“It is with deep and heartfelt gratitude that I thank the people of southern Indiana for allowing me to continue serving in Congress,” Hill said in the statement.

Schansberg, an economics professor at IU-Southeast New Albany, said he thought campaigning in a presidential year made the race more difficult for him. While voters seem worried about the economy, Schansberg said a lack of overwhelming support made him doubt their true concern.

“People say they want change, but they have an economics professor in a time when that kind of expertise would seem to be pretty welcome,” Schansberg said. “It’s odd people don’t vote for that more often.”

Hill’s vote against Congress’ $300 billion bailout, Schansberg said, was a key factor in his victory. Despite getting his issues out there, Schansberg said he expected a higher percentage of support.

“It’s a platform to talk about things that don’t get talked about if I wasn’t in there,” Schansberg said. “I’m not disappointed in the sense we did everything we could do. I am disappointed in the numbers.”...

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Schansberg provides post-election comments

November 4, 2008


Schansberg provides post-election comments

After the networks declared Baron Hill the winner of the 9th Congressional District in Indiana, Dr. Eric Schansberg congratulated Rep. Hill on his victory—and thanked Mike Sodrel for running a clean campaign and his willingness to debate.

From the results available at 10:00 (with 77% of precincts reporting), Schansberg had earned 4% of the vote, finishing third to Hill who won with 56% and Sodrel who received 40%. This was the second race for Schansberg. This was the fourth race between Sodrel and Hill—and the third victory for Hill.

Dr. Schansberg commented: “We increased our number of votes by quite a bit. It’s always difficult for a third-party candidate. But it’s especially difficult in presidential election years, when people are excited about the presidential race but often don’t know much about the down-ticket races.”

Dr. Schansberg continued: “The campaign was a platform to talk about things the other candidates could not or would not. And the campaign was an experiment as well. What would happen if a highly-credible candidate worked hard? People say they want change; we wanted to give them that opportunity. We did everything we could do—with the resources we had. Unfortunately, we were still not able to get enough above the radar to make a huge difference in the race. We learned a lot and look forward to using this effort to help build the Libertarian party and to promote freedom—as well as a much smaller and much better federal government.”

Monday, November 03, 2008

some Indiana debates on C-SPAN