Tuesday, June 27, 2023

Cincinnati City Council Election June 2023 Update

After a long delay, the Cincinnati Democratic Committee finally made its endorsements for Cincinnati City Council race. All eight sitting members were endorsed, along with first time candidate Anna Albi. Minor grumblings were present from a significant portion of precinct executives present at the media.  Those grumblings were both enhanced and amplified by the local media in attendance at the meeting. It never ceases to amaze me how "drama" can be whipped up into fodder for the local media. I was especially dismayed at the display of bias from the Cincinnati Enquirer's "reporter" Sharon Coolidge who embarrassed herself with her Opinion article about the meeting. The following exaggeration was built to stroke Suburban Republicans egos with a talk radio narrative their prejudice embraces.
Instead, the Cincinnati Democratic Committee meeting Tuesday night in an Evanston union hall went down like a reality show that could rival any 'Housewives' reunion on Bravo.
 Add that to a remarkable lack of understanding of Roberts Rules of Order by multiple reporters and participants in the meeting. I would hate to think what a reporting attending a nine member council meeting would do, when four members vote in favor of an ordinance, three vote against, and two abstain. The ordinance would pass. It is a fairly common function of most voting situations in all legislatures and or voting bodies within organizations. It made me think of a scene from All the Presidents Men (1976)
WOODWARD: Who's Charles Colson?
ROSENFELD: Sit Down. You know I’m glad you asked me that question. The reason I’m glad you asked me is because if you asked Simons or Bradley they would’ve said you know we’re going to have to fire this schmuck at once because he’s so dumb.
There are few would would get that reference, but that small group is my core audience!

The Democrats had ten possible candidates for the nine council spots.  They did not endorse Jamie Castle. News reports indicates she was considering not continuing her run.  I think the mere mention of this in multiple news articles would drastically hurt any campaign.

The lack of viable candidates in the race this year makes the possible outcomes of the last couple of seats open.  At this point there are at most 12 or 13 candidates who can muster the level of votes to win. The logical thing for non-Democrats and non-Republicans to do is get behind Jamie Castle and see how far they could take it. She has the signatures to be on the ballot. Someone like Michelle Dillingham should be running her campaign and to pull in the progressive/leftist support she has and see what moderate support she can pick up.  Instead of that, Michelle Dillingham took out petitions to run and teased via Tweet that she is thinking about running.  She didn't announce she was running, she teased that she might run.  I didn't see a big response to her Tweet. At this late date in the world of campaign fundraising, it is a foolish move to attempt it. Dillingham might better spend her time working to defeat Issue 1 this August, than wasting her time running for City Council. Ego is tough for an activist to look past.

Charter Committee seems to be thinking about the Rail Road, but not fielding any candidates for Council. They will certainly allow Liz Keating to slap a Charter label on her campaign, but we won't see much of them otherwise.

Republicans are just doing nothing. They have all but given up on fielding any candidates beyond Liz Keating who is running as a RINO, literally as a Republican in Name Only.  Keating will take GOP money, but is not run away from any Republican who would piss off Hyde Park Moderates. Saylor Park can just go fuck off for being Trumpistan. California (the neighborhood) can do the same with a small pond full of staunch Republican votes, but they are it, in the City. The rest of the County is drying up on knuckle dragging Troglodytes, but the County Party lives and dies on a weak Trumpist brand fascism, heaving on hollow red meat, to keep the foaming mouths from splitting the party.

The hot summer is upon us and I see little new to tilt the campaign beyond conventional wisdom. No candidates are making waves with any new ideas and no scandals seem to be breaking through, No matter how desperately the Enquirer and Suburban Republicans are to make it happen out of thing air.

The bet for the summer is OVER/UNDER on 15 as the number of candidates who are on the ballot for City Council in November.  As far as viable candidates, UNDER without any doubt. As far as total candidates, I would say OVER, but barely over 15.  What would it take it get sports betting to include political races in Ohio?  Would that increase turnout? Someone would call it corrupt and someone else would say it wouldn't make it any more corrupt than it already is, but odds are neither of those complainers would vote for City Council anyway.

Jan-Michele Lemon Kearney *(D)
Reggie Harris *(D)
Meeka Owens *(D)
Victoria Parks *(D)
Jeff Cramerding *(D)
Mark Jeffreys *(D)
Scotty Johnson *(D)
Liz Keating *(R,C)
Seth Walsh *(D)

Taken Out Petitions
Anna Albi (D)
Jamie Castle (I)
LaKeisha Cook (I)
Michelle Dillingham (D)
James Jenkins (C)
Linda Matthews (R)
Catherine Botos (I)
Rufus Bowman III (I)
Audricia Brooks (I)
Lawrence Brzezinski II (I)
Kaitlin Estill (I)
Richardo Hayward (I)
Ned Measel (I)
Boyd Miller (R)
William Moore (I)
Stephan Pryor (I)
Quentin Taylor (I)
Kelley Cowdrey (R)

Taken Out Petitions, But Do Not Appear to Live in the City
Sharetha Collier (I)
Andrew Kennedy (I)

Candidate Twitter List: I have created a list of candidates on Twitter. Here is the actual list Twitter handles for the candidates. This list may not last as Twitter turns into a chaotic mess and not a valued website. A future update to the Blog may be a either a separate page with additional links to social media of the candidates or an update to the listing above. Stay tuned for that.

As always:  If anyone has any other names please send them my way (editor@cincyblog.com) or if anyone named above wants to confirm they are not running, I'll remove them future postings of this list. If there are other social media or full websites I don't list, send them along as well.

The party designations at this time are what I've seen reported or what I've determined based on my observations. These notations do not mean the candidate is endorsed by any political party or group. Once official endorsements are made, these references will be updated to reflect the endorsements. 

* = Incumbent
‡ = On Ballot
D= Democratic Party
R= Republican Party
C= Charter Committee (aka Charter Party)
G= Green Party
DSA= Democratic Socialists of America
I= Independent
?= I am speculating based on my reading of the information and observations available to me or unsure.

Friday, June 02, 2023

Let's See Action, Let's See People, Let's See Freedom, Let's See Who Cares

 A big news Friday for the Cincinnati City Council Election. There is controversy that will stir up a little bit of coverage for an otherwise uneventful and unnervingly quiet election year. Council Member Seth Walsh is the subject of an Ethics Investigation by the City's Office of Ethics and Good Government. The issue is that Walsh's campaign manager, now reportedly former campaign manager, was allegedly directing Walsh city staffer on what to do.

On the surface, that really does not seem like a big deal. Every Republican and Leftist crank will be filled with self righteous ire with my dismissal of this allegation. I am not going to lose sleep over it and I am not even sure this is "unethical." So far there is no allegation of any illegality, a detail that is not at the forefront of some of the news reports.

Unless other allegations or information not already reported comes to light, this is at best going to be a minor political story and fodder for snide Twitter comments from at least one rejected applicant for the appointment to council Walsh received. I won't mention their name, but I continue to see why they were not considered for the appointment. 

Something to remember: There is not a "church and state" type of communication line in a council member's office.  Creating a good image and getting media coverage is part of the job.  Yes, that makes them look good and that helps the campaign and is what the campaign wants. Making phone calls to raise money or helping plan a campaign fund raiser while on the clock is not allowed. If that type of action was alleged, I would have expected that to be in the letter. Instead, communication by the person making the allegation indicates that Walsh never made any requests to do campaign work while on the job.

There will be those claiming purity on the actions of the campaign staffer, but they would be grasping at straws and that is such a waste of time. This can at most be a judgement on Walsh's ability to vet and manage his own staff. If this story gets much more coverage than when the ethics office reports on the investigation, then I for one will cry fowl on any journalist doing that.  If there is more to this, then publish new credible allegations, but trying to just make this into a bigger story based on the facts known now will look so insanely biased. We can be thankful that Jason Williams is no longer writing a political column.  I am sure he would attempt to make this into a federal case as a further try out for his conservative talk radio career. I have fingers crossed for Jason's fledging radio career, hoping he can move out of journalism altogether.

More from the Enquirer and the Business Courier.