From now on, this blog is known as Andersonnaut

I’m guessing that a lot of political wonks are looking at the results of the attorney general race on the Republican side today and saying, with a hint of disdain, “Sharon Anderson?”.

To me, it’s the best political story sitting out there today and I’m also guessing nobody is going to touch it. Which means, if nobody is going to touch it, Polinaut is going to be massaging it, especially since the mission of Polinaut….errr Andersonnaut…. is to look for signs of intelligent life in the universe of politics..

If you’ve come to any of the dozen or forums I’ve been asked to speak at in the last few years, you’ve heard me talk about Sharon Anderson, or more specifically, the electorate. She’s the poster child for why Select A Candidate and Campaign 2006 were invented. Sharon Anderson did — I think 12 years ago — what she almost did last night.

With no real campaign, no money, no inclusion in A.G. debates and — let’s face it — no real credibility as a candidate, Sharon Anderson almost knocked off another Republican-endorsed candidate for attorney general, which is absolutely no reflection on the Republican-endorsed candidate for attorney general.

Anderson garnered 43-percent of the vote to Johnson’s 56-percent. That doesn’t tell the whole story, however. In my neck of the woods, District 56B, Anderson won. That’s Woodbury — the Colby Lakes area, including Wedgewood, home of highly educated and mostly informed people, many quite active in the Republican Party. Johnon did win 56A, which is good news for homeowners in 56A — by 148 votes — and since that’s the district last night’s Republican Party was held in and if Anderson had knocked Johnson off, why there’s a fair chance the entire district would’ve been sacked.

He seems to be a sincere person with some ideas worth debating. It’s just that he has a serious, serious shortcoming in the world of Minnesota politics in these situations.

His name doesn’t end with Anderson.

  • This, to me, was the most surprising result of the evening. Wow.

  • Gwen

    I wonder if it has more to do with Sharon being a female than having Anderson as her last name. I would think having Johnson as a last name would neutralize the effect of Anderson. In 1994, Anderson did probably win over Neuville because of her last name, and because its the same name as a TV show host. People tend to think, especially farther down the ballot, lets get more females in elected office so they vote for the female if they know little or nothing about the candidates. If a female is running against a male for judge, the male might as well quit, the female always wins. Voting for someone because of gender is stupid, but I think people do it.

  • Bob Collins

    Maybe, although AG isn’t that far down the ballot. But, even if that’s the case, the dynamic is still the same.

    It wasn’t a shining moment for the concept of voter education.

  • rew

    would have been even worse if Jack Shepard had gotten a little closer. I would love to see numbers for voters who had both on their ballot…

  • Jeff Johnson has got to be thanking his parents this morning for not being named, say, Awada.

  • MNObserver

    I don’t think any discussion of Ms. Anderson would be complete without some links to her… um… musings. Bob, I put the onus on you to provide them in the name of voter edumacation.

    As for my own Sharon Anderson moments, those of us in St Paul’s Ward 2 received our share of Sharon-Anderson-ness when she ran for Ward 2 City Council three years ago and seemed to attend every debate and participate with vigor. Given that most of the debates had the candidates sitting at a table in alphabetical order, poor Elizabeth Dickinson was almost always slated to follow the Anderson response to the question. Following a repeated screed about how the St. Paul Police killed Ms. Anderson’s dog would wear down most, but Elizabeth handled it well.

    I once asked her how she handled it as well as she did, and Elizabeth said that she just sort of put Sharon in that same category as her “harmless but a bit batty” elderly Aunt Mabel.

    But that Sharon Anderson does pull in the votes.