The one already declared ’07 challenger, John Connolly, had an active December and enters 2007 with nearly $36,000 in his campaign account — well ahead of the $26,000 he had on January 1, 2005. At that time, Sam Yoon had nearly $30,000 banked, and Patricia White had $15,058.
But this time around, the anticipated spate of challengers for the four at-large seats did not appear — at least, not for year-end fundraising. Anyone who decides to challenge now will be working at a distinct disadvantage.
The only new candidate to open a committee before the end of the year was Roxbury resident Eric Georgi, a liberal and gay-rights activist. Georgi had not submitted his year-end campaign-finance report by press time, and could not be reached for comment.
However, on his campaign Web site Georgi lists several high-profile endorsers, including Somerville representative Carl Sciortino and Newton pol Angus McQuilken. Another endorser, veteran Democratic funder Ronald Ansin, sent out a fundraising appeal for Georgi in December.
One reason for the dearth of candidates this time around may be the uncertainty about at-large councilor Stephen Murphy’s future on the council. Murphy, an early Deval Patrick supporter, has been rumored to be in line for a post in the new governor’s administration. That would open a seat on the council, which would be filled until the election by Connolly, the next-highest finisher in 2005.
It’s also possible that Mike Flaherty, who just lost the council presidency, might not run for re-election.
But until anything happens on those fronts, potential candidates find themselves face to face with four tough incumbents. Flaherty is extremely well-funded. Yoon, now an incumbent, already has $47,000 in his account, and Murphy has $43,000. The only one coming into 2007 without a stockpile is Felix Arroyo — who showed last time around that he can spend less than his competitors and still get more votes.
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David S. Bernstein's Talking Politics: http://www.thephoenix.com/talkingpolitics