By Josh Resnek
Ballot positions have been chosen and ballots set for printing for the at-large primary contest which will take place in September.
Coming out number 1 on the ballot – which doesn’t necessarily translate into coming out number 1 in the primary – is Councilor at Large and Council President Richard Dellisola, Jr.
The number 1 position on a ballot is believed to aid in bolstering ones vote, sometimes by as much as 5%, as many voters are inclined to give a vote to the number 1 placeholder just as a matter of habit.
Dellisola can use the boost.
He made it on to the at large position last time out by less than ten votes.
Now he has candidate Gerly Adrien breathing down his back, campaigning hard, and set in the number 2 position on the ballot.
The number 2 position is also perceived as a preferred place to find ones name when running for a seat in a hotly contested primary.
But all this ballot positioning argument is made moot by at-large candidates like Councilor Wayne Matewsky.
The perennial ticket topper is in the number 9 position, buried really near to the bottom of the pack, and yet Matewsky will likely score the biggest vote or close to it when all is said and done with the primary in September.
When the odds are figured and boiled down to their essence, it does not matter where your name appears on the ballot.
What matters is exactly how many people vote for you, which is a matter of your personal popularity, your reputation and the type of campaign you have been running.
Former Mayor John Hanlon, now an at-large councilor and running for re-election, is listed number 8 on the ballot.
Hanlon supporters will search for his name and give him a vote because he has created a very loyal and sturdy following over a lifetime in Everett politics.
This is the ironic thing about ballot position.
You can be listed number 1 and finish out of the pack.
You can be listed number 9 and top the ticket!
Name recognition, of course, is essential.
Candidates like Councilor Mike Marchese, one of the best known politicians in the city, are not worried about being at the bottom of the ballot list.
The same can be said for Councilor Peter Napolitano, who is number 4 on the list – and coming off a rather close finish in the last election.
For the newcomers, Jim Lavecchio, Joe LaMonica, Catherine Hicks (not really a newcomer) and Renee Solano, ballot positioning does not mean as much as name recognition.
Councilor Stephen Simonelli isn’t worried about name recognition. He is located number 6 in the pack.