11 August 2005

Liberal Colorado Cities.

The allegedly non-partisan Bay Area Center For Voting Research has ranked all 237 cities in the United States with over 100,000 people from liberal to conservative. It is a cute gimmick and doesn't even provide its methodology, although one can easily come up with some plausible ones, like percentage of the population voting for Kerry as opposed to Bush in the 2004 election. You'll also be shocked, shocked I say, to discover the general finding of the study that cities with large minority populations tend to be liberal, while cities that are all white and have lots of conservative Christians in them tend to be conservative.

Despite being a gimmick, we'll play along and give you the rankings of Colorado's cities, from most liberal to most conservative, which should be no great surprise:

  • 49 Denver

  • 77 Aurora

  • 131 Fort Collins

  • 132 Pueblo

  • 153 Lakewood

  • 158 Westminster

  • 174 Arvada

  • 231 Colorado Springs

  • Boulder, with a population of about 93,000, doesn't quite make the cut, but it wouldn't be unreasonable to guess that it is more liberal than the median city.

    This non-profit bears the stink of astroturf, so I looked up the authors, who seem legitimate enough, with the stink coming from the fact that both are in the public relations industry. There are several Jason Alderman's in the world, including an astrophysicist in Florida, a felon in Georgia, and an aide of a Chicago Congressman famous for arranging to put an appropriation for a dog park in his neighborhood in a bill after his was arrested for running his dog without a lease there (this last one could also be our guy). All are about the right age. But, I'm fairly certain that our man is this fellow:

    Jason Alderman handles media relations at Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) in San Francisco. One of the largest utilities in the country, PG&E serves 14 million people in central and northern California. Mr. Alderman's tenure at PG&E includes the Super Bowl of utility communications challenges: the California energy crisis of 2000-02.

    Mr. Alderman learned about communications hardball over ten years ago, working on the U.S. Senate campaign of Harris Wofford of Pennsylvania, were he served under the then-unknown team of James Carville and Paul Begala. This was one of many political campaigns Mr. Alderman worked on, which included a stint in Washington, D.C. where he worked on energy issues as a staff member on the Interior Appropriations Subcommittee in the House of Representatives.

    Mr. Alderman moved to San Francisco in the late 90's, toiling as a lobbyist and doing public relations for different companies until 2001, when he became the spokesperson for Pacific Gas and Electric Company. At PG&E, Mr. Alderman handles crisis communications and has helped build a robust, pro-active media outreach campaign which has helped dramatically changed the perceptions of customers, regulators, elected officials and the news media.

    Wofford is a prominent Democrat, so Alderman likely started out the same way, although his political leanings could have changed since then.

    Phil Reiff runs a San Francisco video production company.

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