Winning the Sour Grapes

Some folks just can’t be happy with a win. Perhaps in some cases, it isn’t quite as sweet when you simply buy it rather than earning it. Maybe the grapes are sour even if you get them in the end.

Jim Lane campaign shill Ray Torres

Case in point: Jim Lane campaign operative Ray Torres. This guy never had an original thought in his whole life, and his writing contains about as much logic as a Robert Leger editorial.

In response to an unflattering column about his candidate’s performance in the election [copied below], Torres posted the following drivel on Facebook:

The spineless blogger – Voice of Scottsdale – strikes again. A win is a win. Mayor Lane won. The blogger did not throw disparaging remarks at mayoral opponent Washington, who speaks at every Council meeting.

A former commissioner of two Boards and community activist for more than 10 years, you’d think he’d get more votes than a no name mayoral candidate, Drew Bernhardt. This guy beat Washington by 2796 votes. Is there a message here?

The blogger conveniently failed to mention the Mayor’s vote of 55.46% exceeded the General Pan [sic] vote of 51.98%. Why, because he’ll have to say something positive about the Mayor.

The irony is so thick even Torres could walk on it. He’s posted more than his share of “spineless” anonymous comments before.

With regard to the vote count, I don’t know from what planet Torres gets his election news, but according to the city’s preliminary vote count, I received 10,161 votes to the third-place candidate’s 7367.

“Is there a message here?” Torres asks. Yes, if you are going to cite statistics, it would help if you can read them.

As for comparing the Mayor’s winning margin to the General Plan, I believe Torres is referring to the DEFEAT of the Lane-supported General Plan UPDATE in the spring.

Four points on that:

  1. If you are going to compare a win to anything, you might want to compare it to another win.
  2. The General Plan update should have PASSED by a significant margin. That it did NOT is a strong indication that those who backed it (i.e., Jim Lane) should have done a better job crafting it.
  3. An incumbent mayor who has done a good job shouldn’t have had ANY opposition.
  4. Failing that, however, if he’d even been mediocre he should have won by a much greater margin than 5-1/2% against a, “no-name mayoral candidate,” and a, “community activist;” let alone having to spend $150,000 to do it.

I think Torres and Lane are going to have a hard time having their cake and eating it, too.

Here’s the blog post about which Torres was whining:

Results of Mayoral Race Send Strong Message.

There are mandates … and then there are “mandates.”

But in politics a win is a win. Which is what Mayor Lane did with the help of 55% of those who voted. (The turnout was approximately 26% of registered voters — so about one in four voters took the time to vote.)

We congratulate Mr. Lane on his victory and avoiding a costly and potentially contentious run-off election.

But Mayor Lane fell far short of receiving the kind of mandate some expected — or one he can brag about, because only 22,000 citizens supported him serving four more years. Let’s just say the mayor hasn’t exactly emerged from this election sporting the moniker: “Landslide Lane.”

That brings us to the Scottsdale Republic — in what was one of the few-and-far-between editorials actually written by someone on the newspaper’s staff and not just an expanded My Turn column from a citizen.

The Republic said the mayoral race wasn’t a debate about issues. According to the newspaper, the mayor’s two challengers were “simply overwhelmed with his unprecedented campaign fundraising.” The editorial concluded that Mayor Lane’s “easy victory” doesn’t reflect the sharp political division in our community.

Tell that to the voters who combined to give John Washington and Drew Bernhardt 45% of the vote.

Besides insulting 17,000 voters by ignoring the relevance of the message they sent about not wanting Mayor Lane to serve a second term — it also underscores the newspaper’s incredible lack of insight.

It didn’t take long for the newspaper to move on. They immediately shifted attention to the runoff election between the six candidates running for three seats on the City Council who survived the August election. The November 6th election will feature a virtually perfect political alignment with Virginia Korte – Suzanne Klapp – Eric Luoma vs. Guy Phillips – Chris Schaffner – Copper Phillips.

“It’s hard to see how a split decision can come from this (runoff), unless voters want a council divided,” the Republic wrote. “It is an opportunity, at last, for voters to set a clear direction for their city.”

As evidenced by the results of the mayoral election, it’s obvious our community is at political odds over the direction of the city. There is an almost even political split — no matter what the outcome of the City Council election in two months.

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