Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Gregoire Campaign Reacts To Primary Election Returns

With all of the primary election ballots counted, and counties certifying their returns, candidates everywhere are working diligently to figure out what the results really mean. Kelly Evans, campaign manager for Gregoire for Governor, recently sent us an e-mail offering her take on the outcome.

"Now that nearly all the Primary Election ballots have been counted, we can look clearly at the prospects for the Governor’s race. Here’s what we know from the Primary results:

* After enduring almost three months of negative television and radio ads, billboards accusing Seattle of trying to “steal” the election, misleading and possibly illegal mailers from the State Republican Party and incredible attempts by our opponent to tie himself to the Democratic Presidential nominee, Gregoire withstood it all and won the Primary Election by two points!

* Governor Gregoire won the three most populous counties in Washington – King, Pierce and Snohomish. This is an improvement for the Governor, who lost both Pierce and Snohomish in November of ’04.

* Governor Gregoire outpolled Rossi in the Primary even though, as predicted, voters in Rossi counties turned out in much greater numbers than Gregoire counties. Rossi’s counties turned out around 3% higher than the state average, whereas Gregoire counties turned out around 6% lower than the state average.

* Governor Gregoire won King County by 26 percent! Winning 60% of the vote in a county that will make up 30% of the total vote in November, the Governor’s performance in King County bodes well for her in November.

When we look further inside the numbers, there’s even more encouraging news:

* More on King County: Gregoire received only 41% in the 2004 primary, meaning she improved her performance in King County by a whopping 19% percent. This is a clear sign she has effectively consolidated her base.

* And a final note on King County, turnout in King County only reached 35% while statewide turnout is 43%. King County, where the Governor got 60% of the vote, had turnout 8 percentage points less than the rest of the state... Rest assured, King County turnout will top 80% in November, a bad sign for Mr. Rossi.

* Pierce County: Gregoire lost Pierce County by four points in 2004, but won in the August Primary even though Pierce County turnout was 3% less than the statewide average.

* Snohomish County: Gregoire lost Snohomish County by two points in 2004, but won the August Primary by two points, an improvement of 4 points!

* Gregoire also added Kitsap and Island Counties to the list of converts!

* Governor Gregoire was competitive in Clark and Spokane Counties, winning on Election Night but narrowly losing after the negative onslaught from Rossi and his pals at the Building Industry Association of Washington. We are confident that we will remain competitive in both of those counties and that the voters will see through Rossi’s negative campaign.

* The Governor won in August despite Rossi’s built in advantages and the depression of the primary vote in Gregoire counties. The Governor ran -6% behind Rossi in the counties where turnout was above the statewide average, whereas in the counties with below average turnout she clobbered him by +15%.

* While it is true that the later absentee ballots favored Rossi by a greater margin than the earlier absentees, it must be noted that Rossi and his allies spent over $1 million in the last week before the primary election in a desperate attempt to prop up his campaign. In the end, they improved his performance, but Gregoire still beat Rossi by two percentage points.

* We are confident the turnout numbers will rebound in November in Gregoire counties, most especially in the metro Puget Sound counties. This means the Governor’s share of the statewide vote will grow in November as her counties catch up with Rossi’s counties in turnout, putting her in an excellent position to win.

A final note about Rossi’s incredulous attempt to both distance himself from John McCain and tie himself to Barack Obama. First of all, the voters of Washington aren’t stupid, they won’t buy into some hollow “change” argument. This election is about the KIND of change the candidates will bring. Second, Rossi likes to tell people about all these “Obama/Rossi” voters. I’m sure some exist. But we’ve spent all summer identifying voters’ preferences in both the Presidential race and the Governor’s race. And we found that indeed, about 3% of the Obama voters also identify as Rossi voters. But here’s another interesting stat: 8% of McCain voters identify as Gregoire voters. Moreover, independent polls verify that Gregoire gains 11% of self-identified Republican voters. Guess the independent Washington spirit works both ways."

1 comment:

tmcarthur said...

It is important that no one develop a sense of complacency. Rossi is not just bad for state employees, he is bad for Washington. He will reduce health care for the poor and he is terrible on environmental issues. Gregoire is working hard to be Governor for every citizen. Rossi just wants to be Governor for a few thousand of his best friends. Don't let Rossi trick you this election.