March 12, 2009

Straw Poll

Update: Greg Helding "won" our first straw poll. "Won" is in quotes here because the poll really doesn't mean much. The poll has no scientific accuracy and shouldn't be taken too seriously. That said, if you're a candidate it's nice to have a decent showing in this kind of exercise. Rounding out the top four were John Dickert, Pete Karas and Jim Spangenberg. Our hope was to get a glimmer of insight into campaigns' abilities to mobilize online supporters and get them to vote. That said, you hardly need strong online support to win an election. It's the real votes that matter, and we won't know those for a few weeks.

Original: Tonight we launched an online poll for the mayor primary election.

These things aren't scientifically accurate and don't mean much. But over the next few weeks we'll run a series of "straw polls" to see which candidates can mobilize online support. The first straw poll started at 11:30 p.m. on Thursday and will run through 11:30 p.m. Friday night. Candidates are encouraged to use whatever means are necessary to tally the most votes. We'll report the results tomorrow night and setup a new poll.

Voters, the poll is located in the upper right corner of this page. Candidates, good luck!

The real primary election to whittle the field from 11 candidates to two is April 7. The general election is May 5.

41 comments:

  1. I take great comfort in knowing that Racine can count on as fine a person as Jim Spangenberg. His selfless contributions throughout the years serve as a model of the "Good Citizen".

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  2. Jim Spangenberg is a life long resident of Racine, local businesman and just a great all around guy. Jim has served on the city council in a variety of difference committee including finance.

    Jim's business experience give them experience in budgeting, controlling costs and personnel management.

    Racine needs Jim to help direct the city in these hard times. Jim has the intelligence and experience to make a difference for Racine now and in the future.

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  3. Well...I am glad I found the Spanenberg commercials. Where is the authorized and paid for line......

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  4. Helding is off to a jumpstart! He is advertising everywhere!

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  5. I for one feel that QA Shakoor II is the best man for the job. This is a man overflowing with honesty, integrity, cutting good looks, and a cheerful demeanor that would charm the eyelashes off a hummingbird. Racine needs a mayor who can step into the limelight with a gold tooth in his smile, a hearty wave to the guy in dirty overalls at the back of the crowd, and a plan to turn this city around and make it the next Fargo, North Dakota.

    Go, QA Shakoor II!

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  6. Stephen Hawking3/13/2009 10:49 PM

    Who is this "Barack Obama" guy and what kind of qualifications does he think he has to come in here and start telling us who should be mayor?

    Greg Helding is an honest upstanding citizen who knows the difference between a top quark and a gluon, let me tell you. He's the guy you want to have in charge when the cows start mooing.

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  7. Not in this club I guess...whew!3/14/2009 12:56 AM

    OMGosh! First, this is a good strategy to increase/expand viewership of the site...get the candidates to have their friends and family "vote" and comment. How can thinking people believe any of this rot about Spangenberg? Helding? Shakoor? Let's do a straw poll about who among them would be the last picked for the team on the playground when they were kids. I say Helding...he resorted to bullying and fearing what he doesn't understand. I'm voting for the grown up in the race. Karas.

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  8. So, the guy (Helding) who works a computer engineer wins the online poll. Go figure!

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  9. I don't have a lot of respect for Greg Helding based on personal experience.

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  10. Karas was my alderman for several years. He was selectively responsive to residents. If you weren't one of his favored people, you had no representation.

    Once he resigned city services improved in my neighborhood. The winter after he left the streets were plowed a lot better. He was useless as an alderman; I don’t want him as a mayor. I want a mayor for all the people, not just his friends.

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  11. Dickert's an *SS Clown who is all about himself, not to mention a one time friend of pervert Gary Becker. I can't wait to see all his relatives blast me in here. All together now, 1...2....3......START!!

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  12. I'm not a relative of Dickert's - but you are so wrong about him anon 12:43.

    Yes I know he was a friend of Becker's, but the important word here is WAS. His friendship didn't end recently, those two have not seen eye-to-eye for years now.

    Becker lost many friends along the way because once he was elected mayor he started to change.

    The few friends he did have left cut ties very quickly when the child porn scandal erupted.

    The rest of the people he probably thought were his friends were nothing more than political opportunists, and those people have left him now too.

    So to the anon poster 12:43 - Becker has many former friends, but many of them, like Dickert, saw problems in Becker long before he was charged with child porn.

    At least Dickert stood for what he believed in and severed his relationship with Becker. Others, (like Greg Helding), turned a blind eye to Becker's womanizing, etc., to keep in good graces with him and remain part of the inner sanctum.

    These are the type of people that should be criticized for their relationship with former mayor Gary Becker.

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  13. It is good to see Karas' people resort to personal attacks. I guess you gotta go with that when you have nothing else.

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  14. Some of Heldings idea's are ok. But the more I see the more he's try to swoop the mayorial race by advertising all over, talking about tearing down crime ridden areas (forgot to say what he's going to do with all the displaced residents (both law abiding and non-law abiding), he was totally outraged by Beckers criminal actions, but he was always a yes guy before the poop hit the fan with becker.It's going to be interesting

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  15. Karas is a wienie!

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  16. Mr. Helding is pandering to our worst instincts-peddling fear. I prefer a candidate with optomism and vision.

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  17. Pete Karas is a great guy. I've know him for many years. He is an intellegent, charismatic, optomistic leader who was a great Alderman. Pete really cares about Racine and will bring his passion for the city to bear as it's leader. I'm voting for Pete Karas. No contest.

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  18. DICKert tried to screw me on a house deal. He will NOT get my vote!

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  19. Go, Pete go!

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  20. HEY ANON 10:47 - Nobody is going ot believe that John Dickert screwed you on a house deal - more likely you tried to pull something and he wouldn't let it happen. Realty professionals are watached VERY closely by the state and local realty boards and they loose their license in an instant if they do anything little thing that is out of line. Mr. Dickert has alot of credibility in this town and is a true professional, dedicated to his family, his clients, and our city. I have seen so much of what he has done behind the scenes to better oiur city and he neer gets credit for it. Maybe you won't vote for him, but I will, and thousands of others are also.

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  21. Anon 10:47 I don't believe you either. I've personally witnessed John work many hours on the sale of a property without getting paid because buyer's financing fell through. He doesn't get paid until a transaction is closed. He makes his money honorably by developing property and selling houses, not by cheating anyone.

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  22. Hey Sheila & Sherry you'd better get your facts straight before berating someone else. If you recall, Dickert got fired over that for ethics violations. He sounds like a runner up to all the others who have foreclosures, repos, judgements and have been investigated.

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  23. Anon 5:43 - what are you talking about? I think you are mistaking John for someone else.

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  24. Anon - you screwed me on a business deal. You are a liar and a cheater. See how baseless alligations can be said. I should know, I am supporting Kim and anon has done alot of lying about her more than he/she has done to Dickert

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  25. Helding is worthless and only interested in how much power he has. He wants nothing more that everyone to say yes sir, you're right sir. He is difficult to work with and doesn't consider the community first. The clasic kid that milk money taken from him.

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  26. John found me my home and a building for my business. He always worked in A professional manner. He must of shown me 15 buildings over the last 3 years before I found the right one. That is what I want for a mayor, someone who will do all the work upfront knowing the payoff will come in the end. You got my vote!

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  27. Anan 5:43 - John Dickert never got fired over any type of ethic violations - In fact, he's never been fired from a job in his life. What are you referrring to? It looks like you have no facts straght at all.

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  28. I will not vote for any of the Alderman running for Mayor. I lost all Faith & Trust in them with the Gary Becker Scandal.

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  29. I will not vote for anyone who tries to pull a fast one, especially at the polls and especially for someone who already has a governement position. I expect government employees to SERVE not TAKE ADVANTAGE of the people (Kim)

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  30. Here is the article on Dickert getting fired. What don't you get Sheila????? Get a life and a brain.


    Mayor's phone call irks friends of challenger
    By JB
    Thursday, November 1, 2007 2:18 PM CDT


    BY JOE BUTTWEILER

    Journal Times

    RACINE - Supporters of Racine mayoral candidate Mark Eickhorst are crying foul over a supposed attempt by Mayor Jim Smith to oust an Eickhorst campaign worker.

    Smith, however, said his opponent's campaign has blown way out of proportion a call he made late last year to the office of state Assembly Speaker Scott Jensen, R-Waukesha, to find out whether a lobbyist can legally work on a mayoral campaign.

    After a subsequent call by Jensen to the lobbyist's employer, campaign worker John Dickert stepped away from the political race.

    "I think there was a definite attempt to make him leave my campaign, if not lose his job,'' Eickhorst said this week.

    Smith said he had no intention of getting Dickert fired. He said he called Jensen's office to speak with Steve Baas, who is a family friend, to check on the legality and whether it is ethical for a registered state lobbyist to be involved in a local campaign.

    Baas said he told Smith he didn't think there was any problem but would double-check. Baas, who grew up with Smith's sons, said Jensen mentioned Dickert's campaign work in a subsequent conversation with Dickert's boss at the state Credit Union League, Tom Knabel.

    "The extent of it was Tom asking how the credit union's lobbying team was doing,'' Baas said. " The speaker told him it was doing quite well, and that the only thing he had heard that was remotely negative was people wondering why Dickert was involved on Eickhorst's team when Smith had such a broad coalition and was so well supported and Eickhorst didn't seem to have a whole lot of credibility.''

    Asked why he called Jensen's office instead of the state election board, Smith said there was no particular reason.

    He said he regularly calls legislators such as Sen. Kim Plache, D-Racine, and Rep. Robert Turner, D-Racine, often to ask questions. "I guess I wondered what this came under,'' Smith said. "I figure that's the reason legislators are there.''

    Dickert, who has since joined a new lobbying branch of the Foley and Lardner law firm, said he withdrew from Eickhorst's campaign because he didn't want it affecting his clients.

    Alderman Jody Karls, an Eickhorst supporter, called Smith's action a case of "using your political clout to get someone fired just for helping out on someone's campaign.''

    He, Eickhorst and Alderman Gary Becker, another Eickhorst supporter, called the move typical of the Smith campaign.

    Baas characterized the controversy as a "Hail Mary-type attempt by Eickhorst to get some sort of traction on his campaign.''

    "If Scott had it in for John Dickert for being in this race, he (Dickert) would not be in a better position in a law and lobbying firm managed by some of Scott's closest political allies."

    Dickert, who is a former aide to former U.S. Rep. Peter Barca, D-Kenosha, was asked if he felt he was influenced away from working for Eickhorst. Dickert said he could not comment.

    He said he was concerned that the work for Eickhorst would affect his clients, so he stepped back.

    "I didn't want my personal life affecting the Credit Union League so I took a step back, and now that I've taken a different job I have stepped out,'' he said.

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  31. And now, you can hear a pin drop in these blogs. No comment "sheila" ?

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  32. Greg Helding answers the phone and the questions and gets back to you promptly. He is the guy for the job. He has been my alderman for years and works hard.

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  33. Wow, cross dickert off the list now.

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  34. So Anon after reading the article someone campaigning for a person to run for office is reason not to vote for him or her in an election a decade later.

    You have issues with Mr. Dickert that have nothing to do with running for office.

    For the record, in 2007 Gary Becker was mayor, elected in 2003? if I remember right. So the facts you present are wrong.

    I am undecided in this election but if someone has that much hatred for a candidate to bring in an article 10 yrs later....

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  35. I'm just going by the article I read. Are saying it is full of lies?? If so, one would assume that dickert would have sued the Journal Times for printing the article. If he did not sue, then I can assume that the information is correct. That's reasonable, right??

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  36. Wow the Smith's are back at it aren't they?

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  37. Were there some posts deleted here? I thought there were more posts regarding the Smiths. If Racinepost is deleting comments at the request of Jim and Joyce Smith that's just wrong.

    Everyone knows they are involved with the Turner campaign. There's no reason to protect them.

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  38. While we reserve the right to delete comments, no comments were deleted from this post.

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  39. All I can see in this article from a DECADE ago, supposedly condemning Dickert for exercising his first amendment rights (and, yes, Joyce, the first amendment DOES protect the right to work on political campaigns on your own time no matter WHO you work for, even if it is against Jim Smith) is ACTUALLY a condemnation of SMITH for trying to get someone fired who was working on a campaign against him.

    In review: Jim Smith tried to get someone fired for working against him in a political campaign. Therein lies the only ethics violation in this story.

    All that’s missing is “Jim and Joyce were out for ice cream when they saw Mr. Dickert putting up a yard sign for their opponent and were concerned for the public welfare.”

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  40. Arrogant dickert supporters crying again. Funny, Becker was arrogant also. You want 4 more years of Becker (minus the perv, I think??), vote for the good Ol' boy. LMAO

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  41. Dickert is nothing like Becker. Those two haven't been friends in years.

    Yeah I really wish the Smiths would go away. It's so easy to spot their political techniques. I suspect it's Joyce getting on the blogs, I doubt Jim would know how to figure it out.

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