If Davis Elected Mayor, Shift Would be Enormous

On Saturday, Elk Grove Councilman Gary Davis formally announced that he will seek to become the city's first directly mayor at his annua...

On Saturday, Elk Grove Councilman Gary Davis formally announced that he will seek to become the city's first directly mayor at his annual community picnic. While a lot can happen between now and the 2012 election, judging by Davis' record, strong political operation and the diversity of the crowd in attendance, he will undoubtedly be heavily favored.

A Davis victory will have many implications as Elk Grove enters its second decade of cityhood.

From a very technical aspect, should Davis win in his bid, he would have to vacate the seat he won for his second term to in 2010. In the case of a vacancy, the city council can either make an appointment or call for an election.

Predicting the 2012 election is really a crap shoot, but we can look at our city's short history as a guide to how the election might turn out in 2012.

Of all incumbents who ran for reelection after their first term, none have lost. Voters have soured on three incumbents who ran for office for a third term.
Aside from the election of the mayor, the council seats currently occupied by Jim Cooper and Steve Detrick will also be up for election.

Cooper will be seeking his fourth term on the council and should be able to ward off most challengers. Like Davis, Cooper has build a strong machine and has gained much broader community support after some tumultuous years following cityhood.

Things might be a bit more challenging for Republican Steve Detrick who has frequently aligned with Democrats Cooper and Davis. Detrick could face a Tea Party-esqu challenge from his own party.

While the anger of the Tea Party types has been easy to harness on the national level, it is questionable if it will be applicable to a local race. Even if it is, it is unlikely a Tea Party purity test will appeal to Elk Grove's increasingly liberal electorate and, Detrick is building a fat warchest and a political operation of his own.

For the sake of argument, should Cooper, Davis and Detrick all prevail in their respective bids and decide to make an appointment to Davis' vacated seat (rather than calling for what would be characterized as an "expensive" special election), it is unlikely they will appoint an old-line Elk Grove type. In other works, it would be very surprising to see someone like current council members Pat Hume or Sophia Scherman appointed - they will be looking for someone who will share their vision and who can be reelected in 2014.

Should this develop as laid out, Hume could be the Last of the Mohicans.  It would not be surprising to see Hume on the losing end of numerous 4-1 votes. 

Under this scenario, the influence of the old line traditional powers of Elk Grove will have dramatically declined from the city's 2000 incorporation. Anyone who attended Davis' event last Saturday will have noticed that the faces of Elk Grove have changed dramatically in the last 10 years and it will never go back to the way it was.

Post a Comment Default Comments

Follow Us



Elk Grove News Minute

All previous Elk Grove News Minutes, interviews, and Dan Schmitt's Ya' Gotta be Schmittin' Me podcasts are now available on iTunes