About Me

My Photo
Nazareth, Pa., United States

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Michael Donovan: The Loser Who Won

In Allentown, independent Michael Donovan ran against Edwin Pawlowski, a well-funded two-term incumbent who had captured both the Republican and Democratic nominations. Donovan spent much of his Summer in the Ukraine, where I don't think he picked up many votes. But it appears that Pawlowski's decisions concerning the water lease, the NIZ and trash-to-cash are beginning to catch up with him.

Pawlowski scored a resounding 62% victory, which might sound good statewide. But he won it against an underfunded independent with no money.

Pawkowski raised $142,578.26 to Donovan's $13,140. Thus, Kind Edwin spent $24 per vote to Donovan's $3.

In 2005, Bill Heydt took 38%, the same percentage as Dionovan, with 6539 votes. He raised approximately $73,000, and spent $11 per vote.

In 2009, Republican Tony Phillips's percentage was just 26% with 2873 votes. He raised approximately $53,000, and spent $18 per vote.

It's safe to say that the luster is gone from King Edwin's crown.

Donovan's run also created a buzz in Allentown, and probably helped elect Tom Muller as Lehigh County Executive.


Anonymous said...

Agree 100%.

The Banker

Anonymous said...

May want to look at Ed's declining vote totals as well.

2005 - 10,145 votes

2009 - 7,908 votes

2013 - 5,853 votes (686 less than Heydt in 2005)

Ed keeps winning, but overall support and voter participation in Allentown has plummeted under his leadership.

Bernie O'Hare said...

That's a disturbing statistic, and points to a decline in democracy itself.

Anonymous said...

Here's another mind-bender:

More people in Allentown voted in the 2005 Primary Election for Mayor (10,601) than did in the 2013 General Election (9,449).

Anonymous said...

Both parties, but especially Mayor Ed and his sad rubber stamp City Council have killed the political culture and democracy in Allentown. When every citizen is needed the best and brightest have been pushed away. This is nothing less than a tragedy.

michael molovinsky said...

one stat missing is what pawlowski spent in 2005, i recall close to $200,000

donovan did twice as well as pawlowski/fleck expected. they had the resources to bring more voters to the polls had they thought it necessary

people were voting more against pawlowski, than for donovan

there has been an enormous surge in the hispanic population between 2005 and now. for the most part, people of very low income. they are preoccupied with survival, and cannot afford the luxury of politics.

Anonymous said...

This article in the Morning Call from 2005 indicates that Pawlowski raised $115,00. Far less than what he spent this election cycle.


Anonymous said...

Allentown is the laughing-stock of the region.

Anonymous said...

When is the first hockey game?

(this is all that matters)

Anonymous said...

Pawlowski still crushed Donovan so who really cares and what is your point? Why don't you move to Allentown where you have a real right to take pot shots at our mayor. Your hatred for this guy has become an obsession. There is no doubt that Allentown is and will be a better place thanks to this Mayor. So go back to your man crush stories about Jay Finnegan and his pantheon of spoiled supervisors in lily-white, spoiled Hanover Twp. You can't even manage your own aimless life and yet you criticize a man who runs the third largest city in the state. What a noble effort on your part.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Thank you. I speak truth to power, while you attempt to shout down someone who, according to you, lives an aimless life. So what does that say about you? My readers can discern the hate, and it 'taint coming from me.

Anonymous said...

I think the announcement that he was running for governor made it 62%-38%. No governor announcement it would have been in the Tony Phillips range. That being said, without the run for the governor's office that nutjob Ott is in charge of Lehigh County.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Both of your points are very valid.

Bernie O'Hare said...

MM, I tried to make that point yesterday. That group, which basically consists of the working poor, is a sleeping giant completely oblivious of the power it could wield at the ballot box. That giant is far more powerful than JB Reilly or any union. When that giant awakens, things are going to change. But for now, democracy really is dead in Allentown .

Anonymous said...

I love how bloggers think they are the influence and knowledge of politics... if that was the case, Callahan and Scott would have won hands down. But they did not!! Also how did Donovan win? He lost the race hands down. You can play down Pawlowski all you want, the man has done for the benefit of Allentown than any other mayor has done in the last 40 plus years. Hence why he wins so convincingly each time

Anonymous said...

If you listened to Pawlowski's praise of some other candidates on the platform with him it is amazing.

Concerning Geoff Brace , he said that Brace won a tough battle. Brace as an non incumbent was both opposed in the primary and general election. His toughest challenge in the entire campaign was to get signatures on his petition to run, Once he did that he only needed a few people to vote for him to win.

I really can not stand superlatives to uncontested races which was also the case for City Council candidates.

At least David Jones had an primary opponent

I suggest in the future that primaries be abandoned in Allentown that money be saved with elections that all individuals having enough petition signatures be placed on the ballot. Maybe then Republicans would run and maybe we would have a diverse field to choose from.

Anonymous said...

I ran for Lehigh County Commissioner in 1991 and received 25,000 plus votes but still lost.

I am amazed that this represents more votes than Allentown Mayor Pawlowski received in his three races for Mayor.

But the fact remains that the Mayor on the Merry-go-round of success received three brass rings and I haven't.

It is also an irony that in 2011 I actually received more votes than Geoff Brace in the Democratic Primary and the General election without getting the brass ring or as former steelworkers would say the brass check.

However, Geoff Brace was elected to the Commissioners in 2013 without opposition in the primary and general election. I would have opposed him but I do not live in his district. I live in the district where David Jones holds the seat and I did not oppose him

Although I think that congratulations are out of order due to a uncontested race I do wish Geoff Brace well in performing his duties.

As far as Pawlowski is concerned, I must wish him well because he is still our Mayor.

But I add this , I spent peanuts in getting the above 25,000 votes in 1991. Maybe if I spent some walnuts I might have gotten more votes then the Lady in Red from Southern Lehigh County. John McHugh and Martha Falk were the big vote getters with Dan Dougherty coming in third and MS. Madison coming in fourth.. I came in 5th

Anonymous said...

Sounds like Paws took Dent's advice "run unopposed or run hard." $24 a vote just put the hammer down.

Paws is lucky no one gives a shit in Allentown and no one votes.

Anonymous said...

More people would vote in Allentown or Bethlehem if candidates had actual opponents.

Bernie O'Hare said...

That's not true. Most people need to get off their asses and vote instead of blaming everyone. At the polls, you have more power than -Abe Atiyeh or JB Reilly, but you let those guys shit on you. Wake up and start exercising your rights.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Pawlowski does run hard and I do not fault him for that.

Anonymous said...

More people in Allentown would vote if they had actual candidates.

Anonymous said...

I loved the part when Mr. Jennings said he didn't "endorse" Mayor Ed,
How true. How true.
( " It depends what your definition of is,is.")

Bernie O'Hare said...

1:09, Pawlowski has won less convincingly in each of these races. Fewer and fewer people are casting votes for him. Trash-to-cash, the water lease, the NIZ, a complete lack of transparency and his autocratic style have all taken their toll. It is true I am only a blogger. But in this country, my vote means just as much as his.

Anonymous said...

Is 655 AM and 805 AM Dennis Pearson? If so, he has an unhealthy fascination with Geoff Brace. Jealous much? Can't even bring yourself to say congrats? How "big" of you? As if being uncontested is a candidate's fault...

Anonymous said...

BOH @ 11:00
Alan Jennings has essentially signed off on each one of those schemes that you have mentioned. And that's a fact.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Not sure about trash-to-cash, but know he supported the others. he does not support the lack of transparency. Look, I can have major difference with someone and still like them and even support them. What does Pawlowski in is his total and utter disdain for the public he is supposed to support. There is no transparency.

Anonymous said...

Congrts are for people who win contested races. No I am not jealous of Geoff. He could even replace Scott Ott as Vice Chair of the Commissioners. I'm like the old style Olympic flag holder who won't lower the flag even to royalty when there is no reason to do so. And there is no reason to offer congratulations to Geoff because it was obvious since the spring that Geoff would be elected County Commissioner. For that matter he faced a situation like his current boss, Mike Schlossberg that he had no opposition in the primary and general election. Yes it is not his fault. But that doesn't change the competitiveness of the race he was in. There was none.

Anon 12:33 ---I am a hard man to please

But I was happy to serve the people of Lehigh County as one of their appointed Judge of Elections...A long day but well worth the time. I congratulate Tom Muller for his victory over Scott Ott. And I congratulate victorious candidates for all offices that were contested. Using this standard I must even congratulate Ed Pawlowski for his victory and offer my condolence to candidates who were not successful.

As far as for myself I will continue to attend and participate in Allentown, Lehigh County and whatever public meetings I can attend. I may not until this day been elected to any one of these important offices but no law has yet been passed which orders me not to attend and participate. If one is passed I would contest it as unconstitutional.

And voicer 12:23 has not addressed my criticism of a few recently elected City Council people which is very since. While I don't offer these people congrats as well, I do wish them well for the next 4 years and 2 years respectively.

As far as City Councilman Ray O'Connell please get well soon from your illness.

Dennis Pearson

Anonymous said...

"What does Pawlowski in is his total and utter disdain for the public he is supposed to support. There is no transparency."

That is one of the major reasons John Callahan and his "team" of liberal spenders were defeated.

Anonymous said...

Don't blame the Northampton county Democrats running for county council on Callahan. He owns the loss. They were just victims of his terrible showing.

I will give them that.

Anonymous said...

Bernie, is there a way to find out how many voted a straight ticket in Allentown both rep and dem.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Not really.

Anonymous said...


"It is true I am only a blogger. But in this country, my vote means just as much as his."

Actually, seeing as you don't live in our city, you don't get a vote. Say what you want about Pawlowski's "style," but Allentown's seen more growth under him than it has since the Bethlehem Steel era.

Bernie O'Hare said...

My comment was directed at the power to vote that each of us has, and Pawlowski is running for Governor.