I’m not nice enough, I don’t kiss babies and I actually have an opinion and record it for all to see. I even post a plan– and a ton of ideas. I don’t accept money from special interest groups, unions, or from people who want to do business with the city.
My campaign literature is a simple business card- I have a door hanger that doesn’t have my picture on it- my yard sign is in black and white and just says “New Ideas” and my name “Esrati.” I do as much of my own door knocking as possible. I use spray chalk and a stencil to spread my name- and my yard signs are actually in yards, not vacant lots or the medians of public roads.
While my opposition has raised scads of cash, sent out mailers that say next to nothing, and I’m sure we’re in for a robo-call or two- I’ve been counting on volunteers to call those who are most likely to vote to have a conversation about change and Dayton.
How do I judge success? If I spend less than forty cents a vote, I’ll be happy- and if it’s as low as twenty-five cents- I’ll be ecstatic. If the voting map shows that I have at least 20% support in 80% of the precincts- I’ll know I’ve done what no other independent has done before in the last 20 years (what, you mean we’ve had independents running?). I’m tired of seeing a voting map after the election that looks like two sides of a coin.
While politics as usual has been taking place in the high-priced mayoral race- the commission race has been widely ignored. It’s my goal, if elected to move us to a top 2, top 3 election sequence, where the highest popular vote getter sits as mayor- with the potential for change every two years. This will take the money out of the Mayor’s race, and give us a better chance to keep good people on the commission.
It’s also my goal to encourage people to run for commission in the future- even to unseat me, if I’m elected. I want to have primaries with 6 choices for 2 seats- so that we have the best possible discussion of the issues and choice on the ballot. It’s time to stop the Democratic party from choosing candidates with its “screening committee” and then using the full force of the party to attack the opposition like they’ve attacked Gary Leitzell.
We’ll never get candidates willing to run if the perception is they’ll be personally attacked at every opportunity by the party.
I hope to create a database of illuminated voters- who will build a new grassroots movement in Dayton- that will allow new voices to be heard, and to win. But, first, I have to prove that it is possible to look a fund-raising goliath like Nan Whaley straight in the face and win with my slingshot.
My name is David, after all.