Daughter of our most famous local politician, much loved parents, member of the SIU community, liberal, good person, good wife and mother, supporter of good causes, but maybe the worst campaigner in history?
Sheila could have just shut her mouth and "rode her bike to victory" (this is quoted from an anonymous source), but instead she had to surround herself with a pack of idiots and decided to gun big, bad Brad Cole down in the middle of Illinois Ave.
I got how clueless Sheila was after spending a couple of hours with her, but so many people in Carbondale wanted to believe!!!!! It was like Bush's address to the nation after 9/11, we wanted to believe, so we did (at least for a while). Now after 11 months of campaigning, silly whisper campaigns, countless "Tea with Sheila" meetings, hundreds of sign, thousands of letters, we are left with the impression that Sheila isn't very smart/nice/ethical.
Why didn't Sheila read the budget herself if she wanted to make an issue of it? Who would dare raise an issue that they supported themselves and not just once of twice, but dozens of times, over years of votes.
I think one of the big problems that Sheila has found is that Brad Cole, really isn't that big and is pretty darn good at being mayor. When attacked directly, Brad has control of the facts and mostly he hasn't done anything wrong. One of the great things about Americans is that we like being fair and Sheila attacks have crossed way over the line, so we all know they are unfair. Some of her supporters feel that the ends justify the means, listening to them has cost Sheila an easy win in this election.
If we judge from the campaign and the last 4 years on what each mayor candidate will do, we can guess what Brad will do. We can hope that he is receiving the complaints about his first term clearly, he needs to be more sympathetic, put out a positive vibe, even when he is talking to people who don't get it. We all want Brad to keep working hard for the city and accomplishing more good deeds on our behalf, we just want him to take off a little of his hard edge. I suspect this will happen with time, so no worries there. It is hard being a young man, I used to be abrasive myself. :)
I used to think I knew what Sheila would do if she was elected, which is not much. She would be a modern version of Neil Dillard. If things were really bad, should would announce "my bad!" and then do nothing much. But, I have become more aware that Sheila may be a much worse mayor then that and I'm concerned. This being nice, while stabbing in the back and getting caught by everyone, is a bad trend. Her run since the primary is historically bad and that is scary.
All the newspapers are supporting Brad, at first her supporters said, "it is just the Southern." Then, Chris Wissmann shouldn't be speaking out. Now it is a clean sweep. It might start to indicate a trend?
Still Sheila has a whole lot of yard signs out there and her supporter are still sending irrational letters into the papers (I loved the one by my old 6th grade math teacher in the SI yesterday, talk about reaching for points that aren't there). There are still supporters out there for her, even if her campaign strategy has hit a brick wall at 60 mph. You wonder how many people have a sign in the yard, but will vote Cole in the booth don't you?
So, can Sheila still win? I know I hope she doesn't, but can she? Will you still vote for her, even though it is clear that a ration person might see her campaign points making her seem unethical? Even though Brad weathered 10 months of her running unopposed and looks to be untouched by all of the probing for wrong doing? Does anyone believe that she will be a better mayor then Brad anymore? Did anyone ever think she would be a better mayor?
What say you Anonymous and other commenters? You going to the polls tomorrow with the feeling that Sheila can win?