Thursday, February 19, 2015

If you want to win an election in Olympia, get either a Lacey city-councilmember or an out of towner to contribute to your campaign

So, if you took a list of contributors of the last two rounds of successful city council elections, what kind of list would you come up with?

Well, something like this. These are the 15 people (or unions) that contributed to more than half the successful council campaigns in the last two cycles:


Cynthia Pratt
Campaigns contributed to
Christine Garst7
Sandra Romero6
Emily Ray6
Joyce Kilmer6
Kris Goddard6
Mary Wilkinson5
Karen Valenzuela5
Sarah Segall5
Walt Jorgenson5
Jewel Goddard5
Mark Dahlen5
Judy Bardin5

Here is the entire list, plus a few other spreadsheets to show you how I got there.

And, while Chris Garst lives outside of Olympia, it is pretty just outside Olympia. And, Chris is really good people. So, don't get me wrong with that headline. Chris Garst is good.

This isn't a list of who contributed the most money, but rather a list of who contributed to the most successful campaigns for city councils. I didn't take a close look at the contribution totals, so many on this top 15 list may have contributed little compared to someone who maxed out on one candidate.

But, by a certain measure, these people are more influential than a theoretical single candidate max contributor. In addition to their financial support, every single one of these folks or organizations gave their personal time and civic reputation to the candidate.

Some additional thoughts:

  • I'm surprised by the number of elected officials, public officials, former and current. This includes Pratt (Lacey city council), Romero, Valenzuela (Thurston County commission), Walt Jorgenson (former Tumwater city council) and Judy Bardin (Olympia planning commission). Joyce Kilmer, the wife of Olympia city council member (and mayor) Steve Buxbaum is in there too.
  • Only one of the locals that has contributed to the most campaigns is a union bargannign unit that deal directly with the city. While the IAFF Local 468 contributed to five campaigns,  the other seven are not on the list. The only other union in the top 15 is a state employee union.
  • Judy Bardin is on the list, and seems uniquely poised to make a run for council, which she recently announced.


Anonymous said...

Judy Bardin is "uniquely poised" to make a run for City Council - curious what you mean by that? That she's Walt Jorgensen's girlfriend, or?

Anonymous said...

Hard to contribute which I don't do often anymore when a business owner lives in the county, has changed themailing address to workplace in the city and still not allowed to vote for council. I have tried to change the rule that anyone who runs a business in downtown or the city full time should be allowed to vote. No is the answer.