HubCap Spins: Where the Rubber Meets the Road is a collaborative effort of Utah Political Capital (UPC) and Utah Politico Hub (the Hub). One person from each site answers a question about upcoming races, elections, and issues.
Utah’s House District 33, which covers much of West Valley City, is one of the few competitive races this year with incumbent Craig Hall facing off against Liz Muniz.
Who will win the race? Democrat Liz Muniz or Republican Craig Hall?
(UPC) : [UPDATE 10-15-2014.16:15 PM: at request of Utah Political Capitol, the analysis and predictions have been redacted until further notice.]
ADAM ANDREWS (the Hub): One of the biggest challenges people running for State office is getting the word out for the people in your district to vote for you; and that is where Craig Hall gets it right. I don’t live in House district 33, but as someone who drives around Salt Lake County through the course of my day; I know when I am passing through House District 33. This speaks to why I think Craig Hall will win that seat: access.
Craig Hall is making his presence known; not only to his constituents, but to everyone in the county and state. He responds to Twitter questions. He reaches out on Facebook. He reaches out to local media, but not in the conventional way. I have heard several of his texts be read on KSL’s Nightside Project, and other venues than typically used by local candidates. He wants people to know he is running.
In contrast, Liz Muniz is playing her campaigning cards much closer to her proverbial chest. This strategy has worked against her when it comes to funding her campaign. If you look at both of their campaign finance disclosures, Hall has her clearly out funded. While this may explain why there are so few Muniz signs (I’d say I’ve seen 8 Hall signs for each Muniz sign) you would think that the socio-economic demographics of West Valley City would be in her favor.
West Valley area does have a larger concentration of minority groups when compared to other areas of Salt Lake County. It also has a large amount of people who are within a lower economic grouping. Traditionally, both of those things have worked in favor of Democratic candidates. Hall still seems to have the upper hand in this; as he speaks fluent Spanish, and regularly speaks to his Latino constituents in their primary language.
There may still be some sour grapes from members of her own party in District 33. Before running for the house seat, she was appointed as a delegate back in 2012 by Neal Hendrickson, who was the Democratic candidate for the District 33 seat at the time. She and her husband (also appointed as a delegate by Hendrickson) then turned around, ran him out by, forcing him into a primary and took the candidate spot for herself. Maybe she had a reason for doing this, but it sure might seem like a betrayal to some.
I’m pretty sure we can all agree that as constituents, we expect several things from our representatives: that they reflect our values and cultures, that they communicate their ideas and intentions with clarity, and that they are willing to reach out to the people that they represent. In my opinion, this is why Craig Hall will continue to be the House Representative for District 33 this November.
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