17 February 2009
Christopher Celeste blew the doors off the competition in winning the first OhioDaily Senate Straw Poll of the long campaign with 44% of the vote in an 11 choice contest. Only hours after voting opened late Friday afternoon, Celeste had built an impressive head start flirting the rest of the weekend with the 50% mark.
So, what does this tell us? Well, not much. It does show that the son of the former Governor has a very focused and networked group of supporters. Once the poll launched Friday, there was a steady and almost robotic clicking of votes throughout the weekend. A quick glance at the background stats for OhioDaily showed a large number of Celeste’s supporters entering the poll via Twitter, Facebook, or direct email links. For a candidate most of us had never really heard of prior to Friday, it was an impressive show of support. The true test for Celeste, should he take this flirtation to the next level, will be how that same support translates into campaign contributions and how that support can be organically (and quickly) grown into a political movement.
When the race becomes “real” and candidates formally announce, the game changes dramatically.
True enough. Christopher has a lot of soul-searching to do. But if he does decide to run, I know where I want to be: by his side.