(Image: "Don't Believe a Word" by Third Eye Blind. Seemed fitting)
3 Important Notes
First, the deadline for voter registration is TODAY. All voter registrations must be post-marked by today to be eligible to vote on August 1.
Second, the Islanders have launched their formal Vote Yes site - check it out here.
Third, a very happy birthday to Joe "Blow it Out Your Dufflebag" Conte.
Our Regularly-Scheduled Post
People on all sides of the areener issue are desperately trying to show indications that the majority of residents agree with them. Some cite the horribly unscientific polls on Newsday (which have no way of filtering), and other sources have cited internal polling done by political organizations that shows significant opposition exists to the referendum.
That may be the case, and I've been on record many times as saying that I don't believe the referendum is a mortal lock to pass. However, at the end of the day, the polls are wholly irrelevant because, more than any other time in my limited career of following politics, the numbers are by definition not trustworthy.
Poll numbers can't be trustworthy because, in Nassau County, special elections like this aren't common. In addition, the areener is a more high-profile issue than any other special election, so it is next to impossible to study historical data and come up with a likely voter model that makes sense. It isn't because people reporting on the issue are lazy or incompetent, it's just that they don't know....because they can't know.
While I don't doubt that opposition exists to the referendum, it does not appear to be galvanizing voters in a big way. I've spoken to many of my friends and neighbors, and I haven't met one person planning to vote no (yet - I know you're out there and please email me - would love to talk!). In addition, the "often hostile" crowd at the first Mangano areener info session last week....totaled less than 25 people!
Nobody knows a likely voter model, and nobody knows how many will show up to vote. One source cited a belief among certain politicos that 75,000 will show up to vote, which is less than 10% turnout. Given the unique factors, I don't even know if that's reasonable (in either direction).
So, what does this mean? The same thing I've been saying in the almost 2 months since this referendum was first announced.
You have to vote.
Supporters should not take the outcome for granted.
Get everyone you know registered and ready to vote on August 1, because that is the only way we can do our part to control the outcome.
The home stretch is here - let's do this.
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