State of the Race
The Primary Election tonight demonstrated
the incredible momentum Heath Mello and his supporters have been building over the last few months. From the beginning, our campaign has been focused on winning the general election—and tonight’s results show that Mello is in a strong position for victory on May 9.
Tonight’s results make one thing incredibly clear: Omahans are looking for new leadership in City Hall. A majority of voters voted to reject the failed leadership of the current administration. As the electorate expands from the primary to the general election, we are confident that Omahans’ hunger for change will translate to a strong Heath Mello victory on May 9th.
Every race for Omaha mayor this century has
taken place in unique political circumstances, and this one is no different. This makes it a challenge to draw direct parallels from past campaigns. However, there is clear historical precedent that there is a huge turnout increase between the primary and
general elections in Omaha. In the 2013 mayoral election, there was a surge of more than 25,000 voters between the primary and general elections—and the general electorate included far more Democratic voters than the primary. In 2009, there were a whopping
30,000 additional votes cast in the general election—leading the Democratic candidate to victory after an initial second-place finish in the primary.
Enthusiasm and attention will increase in the coming weeks, which is why we expect a surge of voters will elect Heath Mello on May 9th. Previous Mayors of Omaha have won a general election after earning roughly 30% of the vote in a crowded primary, including Jim Suttle in 2009 (34%) and Jean Stothert
in 2013 (32%). Heath Mello’s vote share of roughly 40 percent tonight shows he is well-positioned for a general election victory.
In this context, Heath Mello’s showing in the primary election is even more impressive. That’s why tonight is only
the beginning of an aggressive general election campaign strategy. From the earliest days of this race, Team Mello has been laser-focused on May 9th. Our door-knocking, phone-calling, fundraising and paid communications efforts will further accelerate—and that’s why Heath Mello will be elected Omaha’s next mayor on May 9th.