The lesson for Newman’s supporters
Wednesday, Mar 21, 2018
* The Atlantic…a
* There’s an old saying in Chicago that if you’re running against the machine you’d better be up by more than 5 points going into election day. It’s not that they steal elections, mind you. They just work harder and know what it takes to get votes come crunch time.
Most of Lipinski’s victory margin came from just four city wards. Speaker Madigan’s 13th Ward carried Lipinski 64-36. The congressman won Ald. Ed Burke’s 14th Ward 57-43. The vote-rich 19th Ward carried Lip 58-42. And the congressman won his ancestral home ward, the 23rd, 60-40.
The machine will do anything to win. They’ll even portray, as they did here, a socially right-wing Democrat as a pro-Obama, pro-immigrant, pro-woman “moderate.” I’m not saying the left has to emulate that behavior, I’m just saying they have to be ready to effectively counter it.
But Newman basically got beat in the streets. Shout out to campaign manager Brian Oszakiewski for a remarkable job.
* And it’s not like this cannot be done by progressives. Look at Chuy Garcia’s victories. Garcia’s candidate came within 62 votes of beating Ald. Burke’s own brother, Rep. Dan Burke, in the 14th Ward. Aaron Ortiz won the race by 7 points.
Garcia’s candidate for county board Alma Anaya not only won big, but she won the 12th Ward by 642 votes, despite its committeeman, Sen. Tony Munoz, spending hundreds of thousands on Angela Sandoval’s race. Anaya also won the 13th Ward (with support from Speaker Madigan), and fell 56 votes shy in Burke’s 14th.
Then, of course, there’s Joe Berrios. There wasn’t much anyone could do for him at the doors, though. Frankly, he’s lucky he didn’t lose by more than 11.5 points, considering all the bad press he’s received over the years. A normal human without the party apparatus and with Berrios’ history woulda barely hit double digits.
* The lesson is, if you want to go up against these guys you have to pick your fights, make some allies on the side and take it to the other side on all levels. TV ads, press conferences and lit blitzes ain’t gonna do it. Chuy Garcia clearly understood this. Marie Newman did not.