When the mayoral election campaign started this spring, Far North Dallas councilman Ron Natinsky was the favorite. He had the best political consultant in town, he had name recognition, and he had endorsements from almost every politician and interest group in town. There were some doubts about how much money he had, but that didn’t seem to be a major problem.

So how does Natinsky finish third — and a poor third, at that? Three reasons:

• His endorsements were useless (which the smart money probably knew). Who cares what the city council thinks? Preston Hollow councilwoman Linda Koop endorsed Natinsky, and Rawlings carried most of the precincts in her district — and she is one of the few respected members of the council.

• Natinsky didn’t get the one endorsement that would have mattered, from former Mayor Park Cities. Natinsky was Leppert’s puppy during the mayor’s three-plus years in office, and Leppert rewarded him by staying out of the mayor’s race. Which is just another example of what a fine fellow the ex-mayor is.

• It’s not so much that money matters, but that what you have should be spent wisely. Which Natinsky didn’t do. His TV commercial was so weak it probably worked against him. It’s amazing that Carol Reed, who ran Natinsky’s campaign and is acclaimed as a genius around here, couldn’t do any better than that.