After last night’s results came in, Bloomberg’s anti-gun group is down another 16 mayors in Pennsylvania – and that’s the minimum number. Unfortunately a few of the rural counties (and at least one not-so-rural county) don’t seem to have heard of this new-fangled internet thingamajig. They don’t post their results online. Another has a weird thing of not posting municipal races online even though at the county level, they still have to count those votes.
Most of Bloomberg’s losses in Pennsylvania actually came through attrition. Most of those mayors opted not to run again. Some lost in their primary elections, and others in the general election last night.
Overwhelmingly, Bloomberg will claim success though. The reason? Most of his mayors won re-election with more than 90% of the vote! (Because they had no challengers.) But don’t you know, his lobbyist that he shares with Handgun Control, Inc. – Max Nacheman – will no doubt claim that it is an overwhelming mandate for more gun control in the Commonwealth.
Of course, Nacheman has also been claiming that he has tons of new mayors in Pennsylvania who signed up with Bloomberg just to spite NRA. Funny, those dozens he claimed to Monica Yant Kinney – a whooping one. And he’s from a Philly suburb. There’s a shocker. So Nacheman’s claims are, at best, dubious until he shows his hand.
There were less than a dozen contested races for MAIG mayors in Pennsylvania. Most were won by the incumbents because their challengers weren’t serious candidates based on returns. However, there were a few who were very close to being knocked out – by 4 or 5 points. To think, NRA’s Pennsylvania liaison wasn’t even involved in these local races and yet MAIG sent CeaseFire PA out to endorse in those close races. (That’s a reasonably safe assumption since Nacheman is also connected to them through his previous political work.) Can you imagine if NRA had stepped in to those towns? That could have been a fun game to play.
NRA doesn’t really play at this level of politics. So whether we like it or not, Bloomberg has a leg up on us at this point. He’s got a paid lobbyist that he shares with a national gun control group and who has a long relationship (and sway) with a state gun control group on the ground here. We rely on volunteers for most of these battles. This is a brand new challenge for us, and it will bite us in the ass in Harrisburg if we don’t cut it off right now. For the Pennsylvania readers, that means work to do over the next 2-4 years. It won’t be fun work. But on election night, it will feel damn good.