Reece, Mallory, and Winburn all did fairly well, but did not jump out with anything to grab the masses. Pepper lost the expectations game. He was on the defensive or just stayed to positive to make a big impression on anyone. As the assumed frontrunner, he under performed in comparison.
Jeffre gave a good effort, but was too rehearsed. He would win the most improved campaigner, but he sounded like he was relying on his political consultant's coaching, instead of being himself. It came across as artificial. Grisco and Noble were comic relief. Noble, who bills herself as "Queen," actual used the word "penis" in a debate. The crowd, including myself, could barely hold back the laughter. Even the camera man was cracking up. She used the word in a semi-reasonable manner, but it is not the thing people want to hear their mayor say, especially when you are wearing "Chuck Taylor Hightops."
Winburn turned me off early. He stayed on his message, but that was the problem. He was all FOP all the time. He referenced the FOP constantly and he repeated a random statistic of "467 murders on the streets of Cincinnati," but I never heard him place a time frame for that. Is that in the last 5 years, 10 years? I think he is pushing that number higher, to make crime look worse than it is. That is misleading and playing the fears of the white voters he is out to get. He lost 95% of the black vote when he stood there next to Keith Fangman and praised the police. If he wants to praise the police, he should have had the Sentinels there too.
Overall it was a very good event. WCET puts on a first rate show and Give Back Cincinnati and Legacy did a great job organizing it. The crowd was not full, but there at least 150 to a max of 200 people there. I think the studio was set up for 250. The questions were pointed toward YP's, which I think was a bit of a shame. I would have like to hear much more variety of questions. Many of them covered the same issues and got repeated answers. No one asked anything controversial.
My order on who "won" the debate is only for fun and are based only on my impressions:
MalloryThis forum gave some good exposure for all candidates, but did not shake up the race much. Pepper still would assumed to be a lock to make the finals, but anyone of the other top 3 could make it with him. Reece shows no signs of her residency scandal. Time will tell.