One thing that was done by the Faulconer campaign effectively was to paint Alvarez, not just as young and inexperienced, but the other. It was a masterful exercise of accusing him of being a carpet bagger, never mind Alvarez is a native son. And I must add, due to the quirk of where Union Locals are based, (In LA) saying this was outside money was not hard. So find a way to educate people, about where that money actually came from.
What the Alvarez campaign never pointed out was that the Faulconer campaign had outside help too. And in this case the outside help, was real. His came via Working Families USA (among other right wing PACs) that manned the robo call lines. Working Families USA, (which sounds like a union, this is far from accidental) was able to fool many working class people, who did not realize this was not just coming from outside of San Diego, but via real outsiders like Gary Bauer.
In general democrats have yet to figure out how to counter the right wing machine, which is busy buying local elections. They have yet to figure out that control of city halls, school boards and other local means of government is critical.
So I do not think I am that off in believing that some tools, the phone banking, was done to excess, and with poor message control. (Of course I am an outside observer who got many, many, many calls), but have yet to figure out how to tie their counterparts to the worst bottom feeders of American politics.
Now, otherism in a city that is vey much crassly divided, is not surprising. He did come from that other part of San Diego that really the North of San Diego crowd would like to ignore. They don’t even speak English for god sakes! (Yes I have heard this comment in the flesh). But I also see something else going on. The people working the GOTV are not doing the necessary self reflection to ask, what the hell is going on? Why can’t we get our people to the polls? Why is the other side able to paint us as rank amateurs every so often?
This was the Republican race to lose. It is a special election for god sakes, after a major scandal, but I suspect people are not asking what if some of this is us? And the tactics we are using? To paraphrase Einstein, to do the same that never works, is well, the mark of insanity. We also know, those of us who follow city politics, that San Diego is far from the conservative heaven, but obviously one half of the city does very well in bringing out the vote, and the other does not.
In the coming days we will see the data emerge, and we will find for sure just how depressed the vote was South of the I-8.
And data is starting to emerge. According to the LA Times the unofficial turnout was 37%, not the 45-50% spoken about by the Registrar the day of the election. Now that is a problem. It matches special elections and low turnout, but why did the Registrar even float numbers even when the precincts were still open?