Winning Palm Springs city council seats is really freakin’ expensive

For the first time in the city’s history, Palm Springs shifted to district-based voting in 2019 – and while the districts were a change, the loads of cash being raised and spent in a city with a population of less than 50,000 people remains absurd.

Via Desert Sun:

In District 2, (Dennis) Woods leads Adrian Alcantar by 618 votes or 30 percentage points. With $64,000 in cash contributions, Woods out-raised Alcantar by more than $54,000 and outspent him by almost $36,000.

Woods received a $10,000 contribution from Palm Springs International Film Festival Chairman Harold Matzner and $6,500 contribution from D&E Land Co., which is run by Wintec Energy’s Fred Noble.

As of this posting, Woods has a total of 1,101 votes…so, yeah, $64 a vote! But, wait, there’s more:

In District 3, Geoff Kors leads Alfie Pettit by 1,060 votes or 59 percentage points. With $108,000 in cash contributions, Kors out-raised Pettit by more than $76,000. He outspent him by more than $64,000.

Kors received $15,000 from Matzner and $5,000 from Noble.

Yup, $108,000 for a campaign that has received 1,367 votes.  That’s comes in at just over $79 a vote.

I could go on, but I won’t, because you get the gist.

There were a lot of stories in the last few years about the diversity and progressiveness of the Palm Springs City Council, which is great.  But a real progressive thing to do would be to limit this kind of insane money in campaigns which, to some, appear to be bought by just a handful of people.

But, so long as the people with the most money keep winning, that will never happen.