Thursday, May 10, 2007

Wedge Issues And Low Turnout Spell Victory For Kelty

The Fort Wayne Journal Gazette's Benjamin Lanka attributes Matt Kelty's upset win over Nelson Peters in the city's Republican mayoral race to a low turnout and Kelty's reliance on wedge issues popular with the religious right. Kelty won with 50.7% compared to Peters' 46.7% in an election where a mere 14% of the voters showed up at polls. Lanka writes:

City Councilman John Crawford, R-at large, agreed that the poor turnout helped Kelty.

Crawford said Kelty was able to spur blocks of voters to the polls by taking stances on wedge issues like Harrison Square and by gaining the endorsement of abortion-rights opponents and pro-family groups, which appeal to staunch Republican voters.

Downs said Peters’ perceived waffling on certain issues likely kept some of his supporters from voting at all.

“I think part of it is regular Republicans ended up being disappointed in Nelson as the campaign wore on,” Downs said.

Kelty said turnout wasn’t overly low based on history, but he said it was disappointing to see so few people participate. He said he was able to compel voters to the polls by giving them a message of reducing the government’s role.

Note Kelty's claim that he delivered "a message of reducing government's role." And then recall that his first reaction to news reports that a couple of young students at a Warren Township school in Marion County had engaged in a sexual act in a classroom was to call for a crackdown on sexually-oriented businesses. “We must do more to come together as a community and say enough," Kelty said at the time. He added, "The obvious place to start is exactly where our current leadership failed, in that there are virtually no meaningful ordinances that regulate SOBs." Is that "reducing government's role"?

5 comments:

Fort Wayne Democrat said...

Kelty is a classic far-right winger in that he believes in reducing government's role in business and increasing government's role in our personal lives. If the two conflict (i.e., sexually oriented businesses), he believes MORE in the second.

He comes across very nicely if you like far right, "get the government off our back while protecting certain families" message. If he has to comment on any details (how does one actually govern a city efficiently and effectively; how does a Mayor actually help bring new jobs to a community; what the police insurance program should be; how do you rebuild downtown), he quickly starts to fall apart.

Thank goodness we have a GREAT Mayoral candidate up here in Tom Henry. I'd vote for Tom over almost anyone, but against Kelty even moderate Republicans are going to see Tom as the better alternative.

Anonymous said...

A little girl came running into the house bawling her eyes out and cradling her hand: "Mummy, quick! Get me a glass of cider!" she wailed.
"Why do you want a glass of cider?" asked her mum.
"I cut my hand on a thorn, and I want the pain to go away!"
Confused, but weary of the child's whining, the mother obliged and poured her a glass of cider. The little girl immediately dunked her hand in it.
"Ouch! It still hurts! This cider doesn't work!" she whined.
"What are you talking about?" asked mum, "What ever made you think that cider would ease your pain?"
"Well, I overheard my big sister say that whenever she gets a prick in her hand, she can't wait to get it in cider"

Jeff Newman said...

This is how the religious right has done their dirty deeds in a couple of state races recently.

They target a moderate in an overwhelmingly Republican district who has pissed them off over one of their pet social issues, then pull out all the stops in the low-turnout primaries.

Since the Dems don't have a chance in the general election in said Republican district, a right-wing nutjob just walks into the State House all but unchallenged.

This is how two very capable state legislators have been replaced by a socially retarded self-loathing right-wing closet case and a flogger.

credo said...

Get a grip. Low voter turnout because Fort Wayne voters keep getting moved from one district to another district.

They don't know who their representative is and if they don't know that who do they voter for?

Fort Wayne core has lost over 50,000 residents. White flight, leaving black power. But you better believe that little secret is being kept under wrap.


A City that has a majority of African-American and Latino population being ruled by raced white males, give me a break.

The Democrats wink at this arrangement because it keeps a few of their raced white neighborhood members available to serve on committees that requires a bi-partisan make up.

If it had rained they would have blamed the low turn out on the rain.

Less than 14 % turnout is shameful, but no one will tell the truth. Because you can not handle the truth.

Kelty is a Republican, and the Republican 1st choice did not win. The troops will rally around Kelty because this is a Republican town. A Republican town until you get african-americans to the polls to vote.

Oh and before you go there, Richard ran against a female Republican. Do you think those macho males wanted a female Mayor? So we got a male mayor.

But it sure did help stacked city council with a whole bunch of ...just fill in the blank.

Anonymous said...

Kelty is the only one that will actually welcome African American participation in his cabinet. The white country club Republicans are not about that and the elite white Democrats are not about that. Kelty is a populist candidate and that is why he is disliked. He is about citizen voices in government and about small government without overbearing, monstrous debt. He beat the establishment and he is going to beat them again. You elites don't control the media anymore. You party is ending. The right wing issue is a rabbit trail. Its shear nonsense.