Media coverage of the event was very thorough from WCPO, Local12, Fox19News, and News5.
The entire WeDemandAVote.com coalition, comprised of the Cincinnati Chapter of the NAACP, COAST, Southwestern Ohio Green Party, and Cincinnati Libertarian Party, would like to thank the many volunteers who circulated the petition.
We would especially like to thank the thousands of citizens who participated in the democratic process by either signing our petition, or by listening with open minds to the merits of our case. Widespread common sense and vigorous debate leave us more convinced than ever that voters should decide passenger rail transportation matters, not politicians.
A few notes from the field:
- We expected to find more support in far-flung neighborhoods than along the planned route. Neighborhood anger at the ridiculous trolley plan was as expected, but we were pleasantly surprised at how productive signature gathering efforts were at Findlay Market and Fountain Square. City leaders noticed too, and forced us to sue them in Federal Court to halt their harassment. 1st amendment wins again.
- Some of COAST's LGBT members had been telling us how prevalent fiscal conservatism is among their community, so we made a concerted effort to saturate the Pride Parade and Northside 4th of July Parade. We certainly weren't disappointed. These two events out-produced many church festivals. We had no luck recruiting LGBT leaders to "come out" in support of our cause, but community members were some of the most knowledgeable and budget-savvy voters we encountered. Thanks, let's find more ways to work together.
- Special thanks goes out to Councilmember Roxanne Qualls. Her insistence that uptown be included on the route introduced tremendous uncertainty into the proposal. City planners scrambled to figure out how, and indeed if they could get up the hill, and struggled with a near-doubling of the cost. All of that gave us the time we needed to conduct a rather relaxed signature drive. If not for that, the streetcar might be underway by now.
- The biggest boon to petition production, however, was Mayor Mallory. His mishandling of the budget, frequent junkets, and utter obliviousness to the plight of the beleaguered taxpayer engendered a rage among the electorate that had people yanking petitions out of our hands to sign them.
This November, voters will say, "right back at you."