Thursday, October 09, 2008

He Blinded Me With Political Science

The MOB Mayoral primary is the most watched political race this week. As such, its importance demands expanded in-depth coverage from a premium ThunderJournal like KAR. To that end, we have drawn on the expertise of the local media's political go-to guy, University of Minnesota political science professor Larry Jacobs to analyze the ongoing primary election.

What follows is my interview with Professor Jacobs.

LEARNEDFOOT: Thank you for joining us today, professor.

LARRY JACOBS: My pleasure.

FOOT: What are your observations on the race thus far?

JACOBS: Well, this is a fascinating thing to watch. You've got 9 candidates in the primary, and all of them have gotten a certain number of votes. Some have gotten more votes. Others have gotten fewer. But they all have votes, and there are people out there voting for them.

FOOT: Interesting. Can you tell us about some of the specific candidates that stand out to you?

JACOBS: Well, first there's Margaret Marteeeen. Her name appears first on the ballot and, when you place your vote and go to the results page, there's a pretty red bar next to her name. I also like Baniaiaiaian's bright yellow bar. Bobo's green bar strikes me as well, since my favorite color is green.

FOOT: Let's stay on Bobo a second. Bobo has run in every mayoral election ever held, yet has always been met with a tepid response by the electorate despite his overwhelming popularity outside the milieu of MOB politics. How do you explain this?

JACOBS: Bobo is a very interesting candidate in that he is neither human, nor real. We rarely see fictional characters or talking animals run for office in America outside of St. Paul. I think Bobo's candidacy presents a dilemma for the average voter.

FOOT: And that dilemma is...?

JACOBS: Why, whether to vote for him or not, of course.

FOOT: I see. Fascinating. Fascinating. So, what are your predictions for the outcome of the primary?

JACOBS: Keep an eye on Marteeen. She is currently in the lead, and if she holds it, she will be one of the two candidates to advance to the general election. The other candidate to advance to the general election will be the one - now pay attention because this is important - the one with the second highest vote total. Now, here's the rub: it is possible that a candidate could overtake Marteen in the final 24 hours. If that happens, Marteen can still advance to the general, but only if she has the second highest number of votes. So you see, at this point in time, there are two ways she can get the nomination.

FOOT: Wow. That is mind boggling. Do you see any dark horses in this field?

JACOBS: I think Ecker, Bobo, JRoosh, Iron Matron, Baniaiaiain, Teh Andee, and Nightwriter all have a chance to get to the general if - and this is important - if they can get the requisite number of votes to finish in the top 2.

FOOT: What about Teaparty?

JACOBS: He's clearly gay.

FOOT: Well, duh. That's obvious. I mean, do you see him getting the "requisite number of votes" to make the top 2.

JACOBS: He may or he may not. But he could, unless he doesn't.

FOOT: One final question: how do you see the general election shaking out?

JACOBS: Well, predicting anything like that this early in the game is tricky business. But I see the winner getting the highest number of votes in the general election, and getting either the highest number or second highest number of votes in the primary. This is really where the rubber meets the road here, Foot. You see, the winning candidate who will serve as the 4th Mayor of the MOB will have to finish strongly both in the primary and the general election. One or the other won't cut it. For example, a candidate could win the popular vote in the primary, but get blown out in the general and thus would not become Mayor. However, the second place candidate in the primary could finish first in the general and thus win the election. A candidate may also finish second in the primary and second in the general. If that's the case, that candidate also loses. It's a very tricky process, replete with all sorts of perils.

FOOT: What if there is a tie?

JACOBS: If there's a tie, it will have to be resolved in some way.

FOOT: Professor Jacobs, always a pleasure. Thank you for your keen insights into the Most Important MOB Mayoral Election of our lifetime.

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