Tuesday, August 30, 2011



Alliance City Councilman Larry Dordea (who the SCPR projects to be the Republican candidate for sheriff in 2012) tells yours truly that Alliance's organized Republicans are all pumped up about their chances of taking over Alliance City Council come this November.

The basis of the optimism?

The greater numbers of Alliance Carnation Days (which he says is the second largest parade in Stark Co.; only outdone by the Hall of Fame event) parade watchers wearing GOP/GOP candidate paraphernalia as compared to the Democrats.


Yours truly's mind drifted back to the 2004 Stark County auditor's race between Republican Brant Luther and Democrat Kim Perez.

Someone in the Luther campaign had a brilliant insight into the fact that at community parades politicians flood parade viewers with campaign literature.  So?

Well, the Luther campaign went out and bought seemingly thousands of plastic bags with "Luther for Auditor" plastered all over them for parade attendees to stuff the literature from other campaigns into.

The willingness of huge numbers of parade watchers to use the "Luther for Auditor" bags might have been taken as a good omen for the Luther campaign.

But as it turns out, it was not.  Luther (even as an incumbent in the sense of being "retained" [he had been appointed to replace Janet Creighton when she became mayor of Canton]) lost a competitive election.

After thinking about the Dordea projection, the SCPR begs to differ with his "parade poll results."


The key as to which party will control Alliance City Council will be in the outcome of the at-large race.  There are three seats up and only one (Dordea) of the candidates is an incumbent.

The Report believes Dordea is likely to be re-elected and probably as the highest vote getter.  With Alan Adreani (R) and Steve Okey (D) missing from the line up (they are running against one another for the mayoralty of Alliance) and with Sarah Brown (just missed getting elected in 2009) not running this time around, the SCPR believes that after Dordea,  former Democratic Councilwoman-at-Large Sue Ryan is likely to come in second; the parade factor notwithstanding.

Looking at the field of candidates after Dordea and Ryan, it appears to The Report that Julie Jakmides (daughter of well known Stark County criminal defense attorney Jeff Jakmides) might be the third candidate to win. 

More than at any other level of elective office, candidate name-ID is a critical factor as to wins and who loses.  If the name-ID factor holds in Alliance, Jakmides likely comes in third.  But, again, note that the projected results has nothing to do with the parade factor.

Looking at the ward races, it does not seem to The Report that the Republicans can make up for Democrat Ryan's (the SCPR projected winner).

In Ward 1, look for Roger Rhome to be returned to council.  In 2009, he ran unopposed which is indication that Democrats view him as being a tough candidate to defeat.

In Ward 2, election results from her 2009 campaign indicate that Phyllis Phillips is in a strong position to retain her seat.

Ward 3 is uncontested and Roy Clunk (son of former Stark Co. Probate Court Judge R.R. Denny Clunk) will be returning to council.

Even Ward 4 looks safe for the Democrats.  Larry Thompson ran strong in 2009 and The Report sees no reason why he will not be re-elected.

He only votes in case of a tie, but it is worth mentioning that Council President John Benincasa is running unopposed for re-election.

The only place on the November ballot where the "parade poll results" might be a coincidental precursor of the outcome is the Andreani and Okey race for mayor.

But again, looking at the 2009 council-at-large races, who what the largest vote getter?  Alan Andreani.

Look for the margin between him and Okey to hold with Andreani winning by 10% or more.

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