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Lenny Curry feels confident in how his re-election is going. [Photo: A.G. Gancarski]

Jax

‘We should throw her a parade’: Lenny Curry takes victory lap

Curry has been clowning his opposition for the Mayor’s Office.

As Jacksonville contemplates the emerging political reality after the Mar. 19 election, the incumbent Mayor seems confident.

The “her” in this case: Lisa King, the former chair of the Duval Democrats who left the position to run for City Council.

One prevailing narrative is that King wasn’t aggressive enough in enlisting a candidate for Jacksonville Mayor. Whether that’s true or not, there is not a true Democrat running.

Running instead: Republican City Councilwoman Anna Brosche, in what seems to have been a triangulation strategy that thus far hasn’t shown maximum returns.

As the election has closed, Curry has been more confident clowning on his opposition, including spotlighting fundraising disparities.

Curry’s confidence is rooted, in part, to nothing happening to upset the dynamics of the election, which have shown the Mayor consistently polling over 50 percent.

More to the point than Curry (on Twitter at least): Chief of Staff Brian Hughes, who was key to Curry’s 2015 victory.

He took some shots at King Wednesday evening.

He also reminded voters of what is certain to be pushed oppo in Lisa King’s City Council race.

John Parker, a former Duval County Committeeman, left his position last year amidst racial controversy.

He used the phrase “colored people” during a dinner conversation with other party members and officials that offended many at the table. Controversy raged, and only after leading gubernatorial candidates urged Parker to step down did the controversial committeeman comply.

King’s likely runoff opponent, Republican Terrance Freeman, may not exploit this personally. Rest assured that groups affiliated to Freeman will put tens of thousands of dollars into messaging, however.

The money race went Curry’s way in the end ahead of the March vote. His political committee has raised nearly $4.5 million, and has over $900,000 on hand as of March 1.

Turning to hard money, Curry brought in nearly $50,000 in the week leading up to March 1, leaving him with $225,000 on hand.

That’s nearly a 10-1 advantage over his closest competitor.

Brosche has $110,000 in hard money. Brosche has a state-level political committee also, which retained just $33,000 for the post-March 1 run.

Other candidates, such as independent Omega Allen and Republican Jimmy Hill, are farther back still in the fundraising race. Brosche will take her case to voters directly on Thursday night, yet another in a series of town hall style conversations.

The subject Thursday: Brosche’s opposition to selling JEA, the local utility.

For over thirteen months, the Curry administration’s desire to have what the Mayor called a “mature conversation” about JEA’s future have been framed by Brosche and supporters as a push for a quick sale.

The Curry administration has countered this, saying there is no way to quickly sell a utility with as many contractual agreements and obligations as JEA. But the narrative stood.

Will that drive voters to the polls this weekend or on Tuesday? Ballot tabulation will ultimately provide the answer either way.

Written By

A.G. Gancarski has been a working journalist for over two decades, with bylines in national and local publications alike on subjects ranging from pop music to national and global politics. Gancarski has been a correspondent for FloridaPolitics.com since 2014, and has held a column in Jacksonville, Florida's Folio Weekly for two decades. In 2018, he was a finalist for an Association of Alternative Newsweeklies "best political column." Gancarski is a frequent presence on Jacksonville television and radio, including fill-in slots on WJCT-FM's award-winning talk show "First Coast Connect." He can be reached at a.g.gancarski@gmail.com.

3 Comments

3 Comments

  1. Frankie M.

    March 14, 2019 at 12:07 pm

    Can we get some more pics of Lenny driving a forklift or rolling up his sleeves ala Ron Sholes? Maybe one of him holding a cowbell? There are no winners in this election unless you’re Shad Khan.

    The good news is that today the air is a little sweeter thanks to all those pies cooling on the windowsill, the burgers are a little bit juicier, and the jags finally have a natural thrower of the foosball. I haven’t felt this good since the day before the jags drafted bleak bortles.

  2. Frankie M.

    March 14, 2019 at 12:27 pm

    I know AG will pine away for bleak bortles as he rides the pine most likely as a backup to the goat in NE. The goat & the boat together at last! I’ve never understood Lenny or AG’s affinity for mediocre qb play. That doesn’t bode well for the leadership of our fair city. It’s like we’re stuck in a what about bleak movie for the better part of a decade. Only in this version Dr. Leo Marvin/Curry is a willing accomplice. How did bleak so insidiously infiltrate the Curry household? Maybe it’s closer to a Paulie Shore movie with bleak as the loveable loser or weekend at Bernie’s as the stiff. Regardless at least we can be confident AG will take a certain amount of satisfaction if Foles doesn’t pan out. #folespeedahead

  3. Frankie M.

    March 14, 2019 at 12:55 pm

    Don’t get me wrong I’m sure bleak is a great guy. Plus he wanted to be here which seems to have been Dave’s only criteria. But I just don’t care if my open heart surgeon takes in rescue dogs. I do however care if he or she is good at performing surgery on a vital organ. Foles got a lil something extra in his contract not because of a SB ring or “respect in the locker room” but because he’s not bleak bortles. I want a franchise qb not named bleak or blaine or gabby who is a natural thrower of the foosball. Is that too much to ask for? I do feel bad for all the bartenders & wait staff at the lemon bar, surfer bar, etc. who will see a precipitous drop in their tips & disposable income. #ripbleak

    2017=outlier 2018=regress to the mean

    #mournyatilIjoinya

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