We are in the final countdown to the voters of Texas selecting new statewide leaders. The Texas Secretary of State has a nice countdown calendar. Click here to view.
From the beginning of the cycle, it has seemed as though most pundits, business leaders and even many voters consider the outcome of the election a forgone conclusion. Yet, the candidates have done their best to engage voter interest and appear to be engaged in a contest.
Voters always tell pollsters that they detest negative campaigning. But in fact, data repeatedly shows that turnout increases when the campaigns become more negative.
Abbott and Davis, the candidates for Governor, have slung mud and engaged in repeated debates. Their negative campaigning has been respectable and within limits. Neither has ignored the other and among those who care, their have been clear cut differences between the two.
Patrick and Van de Putte, the candidates for Lt. Governor, have been somewhat different. Initially, Patrick was quieter after recovering from a bruising primary campaign. However, he released a television ad this week that actually mentions Van de Putte. She has been aggressively campaigning all along.
However, the money reports show the outcome and for the most part, predict the victors. Greg Abbott is sitting on so much cash in his campaign account that he may end the season with money leftover, even if floods the airwaves and ground war over the next month. Last estimate has him with $30 million cash on hand.
Davis is barely staying afloat with a mere $4.7 million on file.
Dan Patrick has nearly a two-to-one margin in funds over Van de Putte.
These two women candidates have run hard for the office and will continue to reach out to the “folks” in hopes of winning the election. But every ounce of outreach requires some funding and organizational budgets.
On rare occasions, the candidate with less money wins an election. Ann Richards became Governor after having been seriously out spent. However, her opponent made a couple of major mistakes during the campaign. Congressman John Culberson of Houston beat a well-funded opponent in a Republican primary with a powerful grass-roots organization driven by Republican women and others. It does happen.
If you believe in one of these candidates, you best get moving now and do the most you can to generate interest in the election and support for the person you most want to see win.
This blogger believes that the finances are a fair predictor of the election outcome……