Wednesday, March 9, 2016

The Lake Worth District 3 race and the campaign contribution numbers that will surprise you, especially if you're concerned about "outsiders"

Lake Worth Commissioner Andy Amoroso has a challenger in the upcoming election on March 15th and that candidate, a recent resident to Lake Worth from Delray Beach, Frank McAlonan, has been doing some real dirty campaigning and getting lower the closer we get to election day. Like this recent 'information' approved by the candidate:
Commissioner Amoroso did not send money to the Park of Commerce. Read the truth here.
This is the type of campaign McAlonan is running to win a City Commission seat in Lake Worth? Does he know anything about the LW2020 bond vote that failed by just 25 votes and it's many of his very own campaign supporters who worked so hard to defeat that vote in 2014? He probably doesn't being a new City resident.

Well, guess what? How about this for some perspective: What percentage of McAlonan's political contributions thus far came from people outside of Lake Worth? 70%. That's right. 70%. How much from outside contributors to Commissioner Amoroso's campaign? Just about 50%.

To keep things fair am only going to analyze the last 4 campaign reports and not include any contributions to Amoroso's campaign prior to January 6th. This will be an analysis of just the reports submitted since McAlonan entered the race for a seat on the City Commission.

There are 4 campaign reports you can see for yourself on the City's website. Just scroll down and look for the candidate's name and the reports are listed underneath. The four campaign reports are the M12 (contributions from December, last year), the M1 (the first report in 2016), then the G1 and G2.

Let's look at McAlonan's M12 from January 11th kicking off his campaign*:
  • $350 from Lake Worth† (2 contributors)
  • $3,200 from outside Lake Worth (6 contributions from Jupiter, Pompano Beach, etc. Interesting isn't it?)
When you add up all the contributions from all the campaign reports the numbers look a little better but not by much. You can clearly see that outsiders are the major backers of McAlonan's campaign:
  • $2,839 from 33 contributors in Lake Worth (with some contributing twice)
  • $6,660 from outside Lake Worth by 34 contributors
The disparity is hard not to notice. About 70% of McAlonan's political contributions are from outsiders who probably have no idea what the issues are in Lake Worth.

The total money raised thus far on the M12, M1, G1, and G2 are thus:
  • $9,499 by McAlonan
  • $28,867 by Commissioner Amoroso
Here are the totals from Amoroso's campaign reports:
  • $14,717 from inside Lake Worth (114 contributors)
  • $14,150 from outside Lake Worth, 67 contributors (includes money that follows endorsements)
Do you need a calculator? You can clearly see the pattern here in comparison with McAlonan's campaign contributions.

Commissioner Amoroso clearly has more and broader support within the City of Lake Worth and that shows in the broad range of contributions from the residents throughout the City and from the business community as well. McAlonan is counting on the support from many outside the City of Lake Worth and that begs the question: What are these outsiders hoping to get in return for their support?

In another interesting twist the campaign reports for the Anarchist Ryan Hartman show nearly the same trend in numbers: Nearly 70% of his political contributions are from outside Lake Worth! So much for a grassroots campaign. If you didn't know, the Anarchist is challenging Vice Mayor Scott Maxwell for a seat on the City Commission.

Check back later and you might be interested in the people who are funding the Anarchists campaign and who are also funding McAlonan. Now that is very interesting. Stay tuned.
*If anyone decides to crunch the numbers and comes up with a different result, let me know. I'll review the numbers for accuracy. If your plan is to quibble over a percentage point going one way or another, don't bother. Contributions include monetary and in-kind. Note that the final campaign reports will be posted online March 11th.
†For this analysis am using the standard set by ABC25/WPBF and CBS12/WPEC. As long as the address is "Lake Worth" it doesn't matter if the contribution is inside the actual City of Lake Worth or just the postal address.