I’m already pretty confident on how things will go, however.
For one thing, most of the people that are gonna vote have done so by now.
Yeah, mail-in-only ballots just got to them on Friday, but informed voters already know what they’re going to do and they would have done it by now.
Just 10,000 of the 45,000 ballots will be returned, after all.
And I know what this looks like on the doors.
- You go to one house…they’re not home.
- You go to the next house…they don’t care.
- You go to the house after that…they’ve already voted.
That’s gonna be the pattern from here on out…if anyone’s still knocking on the doors. I’m sure some are, and maybe I’ll even get out a do a bit more.
Like I just said, though…most people have voted and the rest don’t much care to.
Most elections in Montana are about the same. We have low-information voters, low turnout, and once elected, representatives that are pretty unresponsive to us.
Politics as usual.
I’m pretty sick of it, but more on that later.
For now…here’s how I see the Missoula races shaping up.
Mayor Engen – I think we’ll reelect Engen to his 4th term. Look at the 2015 school bond vote. The $88 million elementary school bond passed 59% to 41% and the $70 million high school bond passed 50.3% to 49.7%.
I think the mayoral race will be similar to the elementary bond. If the race is close I don’t think it’ll be much more than Engen 53%, Triepke 47%.
- Ward 1 – Bryan Von Lossberg is a shoe-in
- Ward 2 – Jordan Hess is a shoe-in
- Ward 3 – Heather Harp will win this one easily, having been chosen by current seat-warmer, Emily Bentley
- Ward 4 – This one is the only toss-up, just because there are so many candidates. The safe bet is that Wilkins will retain his seat. If anyone upsets that, it’ll likely be Ramos, as he has the most signs, he’s on the radio, and I think he’s pounded the doors. Still, Badgley does have the Democratic nod, and that might be enough to get him over the hump. I’m confident I won’t be winning, as I said before the race even started.
- Ward 5 – Stacie Anderson should take this one easily, though I’d like to see Deschamps win.
- Ward 6 – Julie Merritt is a shoe-in
I wish there were more sites telling you about these races…and others around the state.
Last Best News has done a good job profiling the Billings races, and some of the local media has done a good job telling us what’s going on in Great Falls.
I have no idea what’s happening in Butte, Helena, Bozeman, Kalispell or other places.
That’s the Montana media and Montana blogosphere for you.
At the same time, those other races don’t matter to me. I mean…why should I care who gets elected to municipal office in Billings?
Don’t affect me none.
Most things in this state don’t affect me. Most things in this country don’t affect me.
The drive-by media doesn’t want me to think that – they want me to think that all the things they’re foaming at the mouth over have a big impact on me.
Alas, that’s just not the case.
I think that’s true in your life as well.
I think most people in Montana know that, and I think most people in Montana aren’t really interested in seeking out informed opinions about their state and their world.
Just look at the blog rankings:
- Missoula Current #267,000
- MT Cowgirl #430,000
- Big Sky Words #509,000
- ID #625,000
- Last Best News #738,000
- Flathead Memo #2.7 million
My monthly reports get about 150 views, if even that. Just spinning my wheels in the mud there.
Six weeks ago I was the most visited of those sites, but I’ve fallen since then. Posting fewer articles surely had an effect on that.
But really…most people don’t care about what I write now.
For instance, this month I’ve put up 15 articles. Here are the most ‘popular:’
- Montana Special Session History: 366 views
- Is This Person MT Cowgirl? 321 views
- Missoula’s Waste-of-Time Gestures: 263 views
- Missoula: What a Mess: 244 views
- Missoula Municipal Candidates and Their Money: 242 views
- Montana Biographies: 238 views
Not too many people there. Most of ‘em are probably die-hards, paid staff, bureaucrats, or other politicos.
I’m willing to bet that few are regular, working Montanans…you know, the people I wanted to reach?
I went from around 10,000 visitors a week during the recent special election to about 6,000 a week now.
And it makes me wonder…if people aren’t interested in reading what I’m writing, then why am I writing it?
What else could I be doing with my time?
How could I benefit myself and my family, for instance?
I think that’s more important at this point than trying to make the city, the state, or the country better.
I tried that for nearly 5 years. Didn’t work. I think I just made most people sick of me. Many hate me. Few like my ideas. Fewer like me.
So I’ll be hanging it up, going out as close to the top as I can.
This is the nice thing about America – you can try new things, perhaps have a little success, but when they stop working, you just pack up and move on to the next thing. Mobility.
I think I had a pretty good run, from March 2013 to November 2017.
Hey…don’t be surprised! I told you at the beginning of the month that I was winding down.
I plan to put up one more post before then, however.
In 14 days.