Gobs of emails to the Peak have buzzed for the last two weeks with word that the mounting attacks by Steve Hogan and the AFL-CIO were quickly rolling back Ryan Frazier's commanding lead in the race for Aurora Mayor.
Hogan's campaign clearly thought so.
Tonight those whispers are now known by a different name…election results.
Ed Perlmutter, the AFL-CIO and Steve Hogan won a surprise come-from-behind victory in the race for Aurora Mayor, waging a fiercely negative campaign against Frazier. For Frazier, the loss is a terribly disappointing one, and his second in the last 12 months.
With the majority of the votes counted, Hogan garnered 38 percent of the vote, while Frazier earned 29 percent, and Jude Sandvall netted a respectable 15 percent.
Conservative leaders in Aurora, meanwhile, who were divided between Frazier and the insurgent GOP activist Sandvall, must be wondering what might have been, as Republican party brokers once again quarreled their way to an election night defeat for both of the conservative candidates.
This time, a split Republican establishment handed the election to a Democrat lap dog, instead of an actual Democrat. But that must seem like small solace to Republicans as they watch Ed Perlmutter and the AFL-CIO consolidate more influence over Colorado's third largest city.
Sandvall just weeks ago was barely even a blip on the radar as the race began. As it ended, though, the Republican activist had nailed down a remarkable percent of the vote…and he did it with almost no paid media campaign. Losing is never fun, but Sandvall came from nowhere to run a respectable race…a place holder for the future.
Still, it wasn't enough to get Sandvall a plurality of the vote, as he and Frazier very likely split the GOP vote enough to deny conservatives the Mayorship.
In tandem, Hogan's ability to consolidate Aurora Democrats and Sandvall's bounce among Aurora Republicans were enough to do Frazier in…the victim of a two-front war and a too-nice campaign.
As Hogan pops the bubbly and Frazier, Sandvall and Aurora conservatives lick their wounds in defeat, it bears asking…
Will conservatives ever learn to hit as hard as the liberals?
And will conservatives ever stop snatching defeat from the gift basket of electoral victory?
As the Hogan-Perlmutter ticket celebrates tonight, you really do have to wonder.