Sunday, September 06, 2009

it gets more interesting

So my local city councilman Eric Jurgensen decided to not run again this year because his family business was facing some serious legal troubles. And while these city positions are technically non-partisan, it was pretty clear that he was a Republican (although he voted very liberally, at least for a Utah Republican). There are many people running for this open seat race, including a classmate and friend of mine from law school--Yossof Sharifi. Yossof is running as a libertarian. There are two obvious Democrats in the race--LIsa Allcott, whose signs and mailings say Democrat on them--and Stan Penfold.

Penfold was the director of the Utah AIDS Foundation, his black on yellow signage is a subtle sign that he is indeed supported by Mayor Ralph Becker. A number of other prominent Dems support Penfold as well, including former Congresswoman Karen Shepherd.

Allcott has more cash behind her, and has a raft of endorsements from the Democratic establishment as well, including Peter Corroon. And although Penfold is a gay man and ran the Utah AIDS foundation, Allcott has the support of the Utah Stonewall Democrats and Equality Utah (although these gay rights groups appear to be supporting both Allcott and Penfold).

These two appear to be the front runners, but it could be that they split the Democratic vote and someone else squeaks into the runoff (that's Yossof's plan). Both Allcott and Penfold have been sending mailings and flyers. I have had door knocks from Allcott's campaign (once with her personally, another with a staffer/volunteer) and Penfold has called my parents house for me twice, once even with a colleague from work. And while I have seen some signs for the other candidates, Jennifer J. Johnson and Phil Carroll, I have not seen any other forms of on the ground presence from them (and nothing from Yossof).

I wish all of the candidates the best of luck and will be following this race closely.

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