January 11, 2015
Come March, it will be all about which candidates can get the most of their supporters to go vote, and their opponent’s supporters to stay home.
At this point anyone can win, and it’s just up to the candidates to see how well they can do. Leary and Brewer have the “home court advantage” being the City Hall insiders, but only by a nose.
An aggressive campaign by MacKinnon or Seidel that tackles issues that are bold enough to wake voters up could turn the election in their favor. A campaign focus that puts voters to sleep such as “setbacks” or “underground timeline” isn’t going to inspire many people to vote. If the challengers hope to rouse voters out of their complacency and take a chance on a newcomer, they will also need to be telling voters in bold ways about many other eye opening, controversial, Winter Park City Commission issues in a way that engages and captures the imagination and hearts of the voters and demands their feet in the voting booth on election day.
The conventional strategy of a successful challenger is to publicize the major negative qualities of their opponent as often as possible, while providing voters with a positive, inspiring vision of their own for the future of Winter Park.
City Hall insiders running, if they hope to win, will have to run a safe campaign that emphasizes accomplishments, and take the wind out of the sails of their challenger by agreeing to reverse course on some of their more controversial positions and mistakes that have fueled their opponent’s challenge.
May the best candidates win.