The campaign for City Council just got serious.
Douglas Bruce and his fellow “reformers” have created and seriously funded a political issue committee for the “Reform Team," a slate of five candidates headed by Bruce who are running for at-large positions on City Council.
They’ve raised $60,050 so far, including $20,000 from the Dougster, $10,000 from Richard Bruce, $10,000 from Ed Bircham, $10,000 from Gretchen Kasameyer, and $10,000 from Mark Bogosian.
They’ve spent $16,000 so far on signs, website design, and other campaign-related expenses.
None of their at-large opponents have as yet raised that kind of money, although Jan Martin, Tim Leigh and Sean Paige have all had some success in raking in the bucks. Paige raised $8,635 during the two-week reporting period, while Leigh raised $10,900, and Martin $12,365.
But if Bruce and Bircham are prepared to write even more big checks, which they’re certainly capable of doing, all bets are off. They’ll wage a slick, professional campaign that will burnish the team’s image in ways that few would have expected when the slate was first organized. They won’t come off as an ad hoc group of loonies, but as serious-minded concerned citizens trying to wrest control of city government from the predatory taxophiles who have so long had their way with the hapless citizenry.
For the other candidates, and for everyone in the city, this is one helluva wake-up call.
Will this force organizations such as the Housing and Building Association, the Pikes Peak Association of Realtors and the Greater Colorado Springs Chamber of Commerce to step up and fund their preferred candidates at another order of magnitude? Will we see $150,000 campaigns launched in the next couple of weeks?
If not, we may yet see a Bruceian takeover of city government.