Handicapping the mayor’s race: Yard sign edition

Drove around Dallas north of Northwest Highway for 90 minutes on Sunday in search of mayoral campaign yard signs (and spent $3.40 a gallon gas in the process — talk about dedication). We’ve had several discussions over the years about whether yard signs matter; the general consensus seems to be that they’re one indication of who is doing better than someone else.

In this case, with the mayoral election eight weeks away, I learned two things. First, if yard signs matter, this election is a huge yawner. I drove the mosh pit of Dallas city politics, where people actually vote and elections are decided — Belt Line south to Northwest Highway, and the Richardson city line to just west of the tollway. Most of the neighborhoods didn’t have any yard signs, and those I did see had one or two a block, tops. Yes, it wasn’t a scientific survey, but if those people aren’t interested, will anyone be?

Second, I saw Rawlings yard signs. I saw Kunkle yard signs. I saw Pray to Save America yard signs. I saw yard signs for high school athletics. But I didn’t see one Ron Natinsky yard sign. Zip. Zero. Zilch. Assuming Natinsky is doing yard signs (and his web site says he is), this must mean something. But I have no idea what that it is. It’s just too surreal to make any sense of.

Updated odds:

Far North Dallas councilman Ron Natinsky (7-2, previously 5-2): He didn’t get former Preston Hollow councilman Mitch Rasansky’s endorsement, the first significant name to go elsewhere (to Kunkle). And what does the yard sign business mean?

Park Board president Mike Rawlings (6-1, previously 8-1): Got my first Rawlings campaign mailer, which looked expensive but seemed to come from the same template that ex-Mayor Park Cities used when he ran in 2007. Rawlings says he had $200 when he arrived in Dallas; Leppert said he worked as a janitor to support his family.

Former police chief David Kunkle (5-1, previously 6-1): He had a relatively fair number of signs in Natinsky territory, and the Rasansky endorsement should help.


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