Jesse Cornett snuck next door to the Lucky Lab to check the early returns. This is how he looked before he saw 'em:
Then Markgraf, his campaign manager, came in with a sheet of paper showing the early returns, and everything changed:
Saltzman: 35,469 or 55%
Rudy Soto: 4,657 or 7.3%
Mary Volm: 8,108 or 12.7%
Jesse Cornett: 4,412 or 6.9%
"That can't stand, I mean...Rudy Soto got more votes than me," Cornett told a campaign buddy.
Then he came back next door to his campaign office.
"It's just the pre-count stuff," said another staffer.
"Fuck," said Cornett. "That's half the votes."
Beth Slovic from Willamette Week left already. Then Markgraf presented Cornett with a framed copy of his illustration from the Mercury's endorsements, saying "because you are a champ":
"Thank you all for your help in the last 3 months," said Cornett. "I gathered 1200 contributions, we talked to over 12,000 voters about the issues that are important. Though the votes were not nearly as high as I needed to get a runoff, the issues have been well received. The message of making sure that we're spending our tax dollars wisely, focusing on jobs, and making sure there's a voice in city hall representing those who have traditionally not been represented in the city, have been well received. I believe that because of this campaign, we'll have made the incumbent a better commissioner who'll pay more attention to his responsibilities—which are considerably less, now, than when we started. There's way too much beer to leave soon, so I'm going to stick around."