On Saturday, voters cast their ballots for a new Senator in District 6. The heavily Latino district had an abysmally low turnout and provided little clarity for weary observers and constituents who lack representation.
There were 8 candidates that filed for the position and the Saturday election just allowed the two front-runners to confirm their standing. Former County Commissioner Sylvia Garcia actually finished ahead of Alvarado by 600+ votes.
To analyze the election more deeply, Garcia was stronger in early vote. As we expected with her organization support and endorsements, teams deployed effectively across the district and turned out voters for absentee and early vote. On Election Day, Alvarado finished with a 33 vote lead over Garcia.
The Governor has not yet called a date for the Run-off election so the two women have to keep their voters motivated, their organizations strong and fundraising active.
The Run-off election will be a shear game of turnout. The candidate that is best organized and best funded will win the election. Towards the January 26th election date, Alvarado spent a burst of money on television advertising. Paid media is often referred to as the “air war”. “Air wars” are most effective when a large turnout is expected. Garcia seems to have remained focused on the “ground war”, a well-organized effort to turn out her voters. Garcia also ran ads and Alvarado had a ground war engaged.
For the run-off, the election will be all about the “ground war”. The candidate that is able to turn out their voters will be the ultimate victor. Garcia has a slight advantage with money at this point but both will be adequately funded.
A couple of things are certain for Senate 6 – EVERY VOTE COUNTS! The next Senator from District 6 will be a female!
Weary politicos who were engaged in working, donating and/or just observing this race before the November elections will have no peace. The fundraising window for City of Houston elections in November opens on Friday, February 1. The letters requesting funds for 2013 and the invites to fundraisers are already printing………