Only 22 percent of voters in the City of Rochester came out on Election Day. That compares to 29 percent in 2011, the last race for county executive. That’s about 6,400 fewer voters, an astonishing drop.
Can’t blame the weather. It was a beautiful, sunny day.
The county executive contest was the main reason for city Democrats to go to the polls. The citywide races were won in the primary, as Democrats outnumber Republicans in the city 6 to 1.
Maybe Sandy Frankel wasn’t the most exciting candidate, but she suffered from a weak party. The local Democrats are deeply divided. The party has a limited get-out-the-vote operation and limited funds. Mayor Lovely Warren does have a get-out-the-vote operation and a huge campaign account. But she won’t lift a finger to help. She let Sandy Frankel twist in the wind.
Doing the math, if city voters turned out at the same rate as the towns, another 8,200 people would have voted. That’s not enough to have changed the outcome in the county executive race, even if all voted for Frankel. But city voters can make a difference in countywide elections. Rep. Louise Slaughter lost the suburbs, but won the city and was able to keep her seat.
The following is a post-election Twitter exchange with several local journalists. It discusses whether the state of the local party is to blame for Democratic losses and whether Mayor Warren is obligated to help right the ship.
What accounts for the horrible showing on Election Day?