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Thursday, November 30, 2006

Show me the money!

Early in the campaign season as then-Shreveport city council candidate Bryan Wooley billboards and ads began popping up, the lingering question was “How is he paying for it?” His campaign finance reports, after all, showed he had only spent about $3,000 two weeks before the primary election.

But as later finance reports show, the now-District D city councilman loaned himself more than $38,000 and raised around $13,000 compared to incumbent Cynthia Norton Robertson’s approximate $23,000 in donations and personal loans.

Mr. Mayor, a request

Dear Mr. Mayor,

As you invite the community to join volunteer boards to help you make your decisions and shape the direction of the city, may we request that you keep your promise of transparency – and do it without reminders from the media of the state’s open meetings laws.

But just in case you’ve been busy with the responsibilities of your early days in office, here’s a refresher: “The law grants the public the right to attend and record the deliberations of public bodies including city and parish governing bodies; school boards; levee boards; port commissions; boards of public utilities; planning, zoning and airport commissions; other state, local or special district boards, commissions or authorities with policy making, advisory or administrative functions; and committees or subcommittees of those bodies.”

Of course the law provides some privacy – your volunteer board can meet behind closed doors to discuss the character or professional competence of your CAO candidates. But there’s a difference between discussing John Deaux’s work history and discussing the overall qualifications of the CAO job.

If in doubt, err on the side of public disclosure. And remember to give at least 24 hours notice.

For a layman’s explanation of the state’s public records/open meetings laws, read the Citizens' Rights Card by the Public Affairs Research Council at

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Remember last time this happened?

Rewind eight years.

KTBS anchor Liz Swaine was, by her own admission, burned out with her job as a television anchor and considering leaving the area when then-mayor elect Hightower asked her to emcee his inaugural event. That gig led to a new job as city spokeswoman.

Fast forward eight years.

Swaine leaves City Hall. Mayor-elect Cedric Glover asks KTBS anchor Sherri Allen to emcee his inaugural event. No city spokesperson named yet.


The end of one era, the beginning of another

Shreveport mayor Cedric Glover lost two family members in the course of his campaign, sister Gina Denise Glover and grandfather Washington Samuel Bradford Jr.

“Their spirits would not allow me to cry or mourn for them until this leg of the journey was over,” Glover said during his inauguration address today.

“My faith tells me that their spirits are here today, that they are amongst a great communion of saints and I am certain that they are proud of me and this great city that they loved. I know this, (wife) Veronica and I and our families are proud to be here.”

Monday, November 27, 2006

Those aren't good odds

About one in a billion.

That’s the chance Chester Kelley thinks his former opponent Patti Cox faces has in her attempts to unseat U.S. Rep. Jim McCrery.

Cox filed suit against the Republican incumbent earlier this month challenging his residency and requesting a rematch between her and fellow Democrat Artis Cash – the second- and third-highest vote getters among the four candidates.

Cash has already said he wants the matter resolved quickly.

“I’d like to go to Washington at the first of January,” Cash said. “I think the weather up there is nice around that time.”

Kelley, a Republican, would like to think if it came down to a rematch the Republican party would fight to get him on the ballot. But he’s also being realistic.

“I doubt that would happen,” he said. “This is probably going to be summarily dismissed without anyone asking the legal questions involved, that is the very essence of who a congressman represents begins with where he lives.”

Taking care of business in the 4th district ... and Shreveport?

Shreveport mayor-elect Cedric Glover has asked speaker of the house Joe Salter to retain his legislative staff until his District 4 state house seat is filled by the February special election.

But that doesn’t mean they’ll be without jobs when that happens.

“They’ve served the folks of the 4th well. They’ll probably do well serving the people of Shreveport also,” Glover said.

Speaking of jobs, Glover will have plenty of decisions to make on that front when he takes office Tuesday. When it comes to filling open positions, Glover said that he’ll look within the ranks but he won’t rule out looking beyond either.

“I am the type of leader that values that type of ongoing dedication if you manage to be able to achieve excellence in your current capacity over the years and have positioned yourself to be the type of leader that can step up to head a department, that opportunity is there for you,” Glover said.

“By the same token, I don’t ever want to be in a position of limiting my options because obviously there are some times it can be of benefit bringing in people with a different experience or a different perspective that may not have certain ties or relationships that will allow them to be more independent and more effective in terms of leading and managing an area,” he said.

Friday, November 24, 2006

Six figures no more?

“I don’t think there are a lot of industries that pay minimum wage,” U.S. Rep. Jim McCrery told The Times editorial board last month.

He must have been looking at the Shreveport City Hall roster when he said that.

Fourteen positions pay more than $100,000. Eight of those salaries are higher than the mayor’s, while $400 was all that separated assistant chief administrative officer Tom Dark from city spokeswoman Liz Swaine. Another three dozen management positions pay from $68,000 to $99,000.

“That’s an area where we will look to achieve some savings potentially,” Shreveport mayor-elect Cedric Glover said of the salaries. “I don’t think (anyone) should assume that any of those would be a baseline for the Glover administration.”

Here are the top 14 positions and their current pay:

Ken Antee, chief administrative officer, $132,480.48
Ramon Lafitte, city attorney, $130,397.76
Kelvin Cochran, fire chief, $125,897.04
Mike Campbell, (now retired) police chief, $125,034.24
Charles Kirkland, Metropolitan Planning Commission director, $115,933.92
Liz Washington, finance director, $115,842.24
Mike Strong, department of operational services director, $114,429.84
Jim Holt, deputy director of operational services, $110,835.12
Keith Hightower, mayor, $109,623.84
Tom Dark, assistant chief administrative officer, $108,934.32
Liz Swaine, executive assistant to the mayor, $108,526.56
Roy Miller, airport director, $107,810.16
Shelly Ragle, parks and recreation director, $107,278.56
Danny Thomas, data services administrator, $101,973.60

Overheard on the mayoral front

Much has been said about Shreveport mayor-elect Cedric Glover’s larger-than-life laughter. Any media interview is almost guaranteed to contain quips:

As a Times photographer snapped his picture, Glover asked for a warning if it looked like his jacket was riding up in the back. “The women in my life keep telling me I look like the hunchback of Notre Dame. I’m OK with it, but help me keep home and heart happy,” he said.

When asked about outgoing mayor Keith Hightower’s legacy, Glover said, “I think having the political will to advance a concept like Fair Share was something that was courageous. … I think also opening up opportunities to serve to segments of the city that simply had not been heretofore invited to the table … was something that will serve as part of his legacy as well. And obviously, probably the best hair of any mayor we’ve had certainly during my lifetime.”

Assistant chief administrative officer Tom Dark told Glover he’d like to continue working at City Hall. Dark said Glover told him, “If we had a nuclear war, the only thing that would be left is (you) and the cock roaches.”

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Their days are numbered

As Shreveport City Hall prepares for a new mayor, several employees are preparing for a new future.

Former mayoral candidates Liz Swaine and Arlena Acree are eyeing self-employment.

Swaine is considering continuing the freelance writing and television she has done over the last decade but is staying “open to suggestions and opportunities as they arrive. I feel things happen as you least expect them, like this job.”

Swaine was burned out with her job as a television anchor and considering leaving the area when then-mayor elect Keith Hightower asked her to emcee his inaugural event, which led to her current role as executive assistant to the mayor/city spokeswoman.

Acree, who owns the employment agency Career Adventures and a jewelry import business, hasn’t heard from mayor-elect Cedric Glover if she will continue her role as the city’s economic development director. But if she can’t do it as a city employee, she’ll consider doing it as a consultant to private business and the movie industry.

Chief administrative officer Ken Antee began cleaning out his desk Monday. While he hasn’t decided what he’ll do next – although returning to practicing law is an option – one thing is certain.

“I’m ready to move on,” he said. “Eight years in this job is long enough.”

Monday, November 20, 2006

Hope that was a typo

Last week’s Shreveport Sun had an article about Larry Ferdinand’s plans to seek Shreveport mayor-elect’s state house seat.

“He said he wants to serve in the Legislature because he believes he is qualified, has the experience and wants to serve the people of Shreveport, especially the people of District 2,” the article stated.

Um, Glover represents state House District 4.

Maybe Ferdinand’s 2003 run for the state House District 2 seat was still fresh in someone’s mind at the time of publication. He was disqualified from that race on residency and domicile requirements. It’s a complicated story of redistricting that technically made Ferdinand eligible to run for the District 2 seat if he had lived at his address a year prior to qualifying, which he didn’t.

And then there were ... four?

The number of candidates looking to fill Shreveport mayor-elect Cedric Glover’s state house seat could be at least four.

Calvin Lester (Shreveport District A councilman), Larry Ferdinand (former city councilman current state coordinator for the Louisiana Department of Social Services' Solution to Poverty Initiative) and Patrick Williams (former Caddo Parish commissioner) have either already begun campaigning or will soon.

But there’s another potential candidate in the wings: accountant Reginald Johnson.

The president of the Shreveport Zoning Board of Appeals said in June that he was eyeing Glover’s seat. Now with a special election scheduled for February, Johnson is praying about another run for office. (He lost a 2003 bid for the District 12 Caddo Parish commission seat.)

“I’m always interested in serving the community,” Johnson said last week. “If the people in that district would come out and say ‘I would like Reginald Johnson to run,’ I would embrace that opportunity.”

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Supporters for hire

Candidates on the Nov. 7 ballot have to file their election day expenditure reports by Friday, Nov. 17. Shreveport-mayor elect Cedric Glover’s report is still out, but opponent Jerry Jones has submitted his.

According to the report, Jones did not spend any money on election-day advertising or election-day workers. But he did spend $1,320 with Career Adventures for sign waving and flyer distribution.

Career Adventures is the employment agency owned by city economic development director Arlena Acree, who lost her chance at the mayor’s seat in the Sept. 30 primary election.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Someone give this woman a watch

Shreveport City Council District B challenger Sheva Sims left the Bossier Parish Registrar of Voters office in a quandary Monday after she requested a recount from the Nov. 7 election but wasn’t present at the scheduled noon re-tally.

“I don’t know what we should do – not do it, do it without her?” Bossier Registrar of Voters Janet Burks wondered out loud at 12:05.

The other witnesses to Bossier’s first-ever recount also questioned the process:

“Does the law require she be here?”

“No, but she requested it.”

“Was parking a problem? Did they go to the wrong place?”


At 12:10 and with no sign of Sims, Bossier Parish Clerk of Court Joan Carraway called Sims’ attorney, who said he wasn’t planning on attending the recount but that Sims was supposed to be there … assuming he didn’t tell her the recount was scheduled for 12:30 p.m.

At 12:15, Carraway called the Secretary of State’s office for guidance. Give Sims another 15 minutes, they said.

Close to 12:20 Sims walked in, apologizing for her tardiness.

“I’m sorry. It took a while. He picked me up late,” she said of Reginald Johnson.

If history repeats itself, incumbent Monty Walford may not have to worry about a lawsuit challenging the election results. Sims has until 4:30 p.m. Thursday to file. Time will tell if she makes that deadline.

Addendum to Campbell retirement

As news of Shreveport police chief Mike Campbell’s retirement spread Monday, Mayor-Elect Cedric Glover sent this press release on “Glover Transition and Inaugural Committee” letterhead:

“While I am disappointed to learn that Chief Mike Campbell has decided to retire, I respect his desire to do so. His service to the City of Shreveport has been a successful and honorable one. He is a wealth of knowledge regarding the department and I sincerely hope his retirement does not diminish our opportunity to gather some of that understanding. As to Assistant Chief Mike Van Zandt being named, first and foremost that is Mayor Hightower’s right and responsibility. I will be calling on Assistant Chief Mike Van Zandt soon. I know I speak for all of Shreveport in congratulating him and wishing him success as he leads the brave men and women who put their lives on the line to protect our families each and every day.”

By the way, it’s Mike VanSant.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Whole Lotta Handlin' Goin' On

As the ice sculptures melted into the boiled shrimp and veggie platters, the crowd at Cedric Glover's post-election party waited...and waited...and waited. Instead of mingling at least briefly with supporters at the Clarion Hotel as early returns came in Tuesday night, Glover secluded himself in an upstairs room at the hotel with key campaign players after arriving from his campaign headquarters.

The semi-spontaneous buildup of anticipation -- fueled by a band that inserted Glover's name into familiar inspirational songs -- was made for TV. So were the sporadic chants of "Cedric!" and "We want the man!" that arose as Glover's lead solidified.

But the cliches of campaign coverage, like the concession call from the loser, remained out of public view. Loser Jerry Jones, to his credit, made the call under the glare of television lights.

At the Clarion, cameramen waited, somewhat desparately, outside ground floor elevator doors to perform the political equivalent of a perp walk. Others glanced at their watches or searched the crowd for colorful supporters to fill airtime until Glover appeared.

And when Glover appeared -- after the victory was certain -- he spent only about 20 minutes in the room, from the first hug with his mother until his last soundbite after a brief, insubstantial victory speech.

As the media waited to collect a few words from the history-making mayor-elect, Glover spokeswoman Markey Pierre hovered at his right hand, rushing them to finish. She signaled to hotel employees to cut a path through the well-wishers so she could hustle him from the dais to a service hall beside the ballroom, where he caught his breath while handlers fended off attempts to talk to him.

Who would have thought?

There are a lot of people today admitting they were wrong.

“Cedric did a stupendous job of turnout, which I would not have expected,” political analyst Elliott Stonecipher said in today’s Times.

“Probably every election observer outside of the Glover campaign did not think these changes in dynamics were possible. Glover proved all of us wrong,” LSUS associate professor of political science Jeffrey Sadow wrote in his blog.

“I can’t think of another race for mayor that had that high of a turnout,” said Caddo Registrar of Voters Ernie Roberson, who originally predicted 40 to 43 percent of registered voters would cast ballots Tuesday.

Historical voting patterns and internal polling couldn’t predict the dramatic shift that took place last night to give Glover a win.

Now the question is, ‘Can he continue to build on the momentum to effect real change?’

Where's Waldo?

Shreveport Mayor-elect Cedric Glover ended his victory speech last night with the words: “Let’s get to work.”

Let’s hope that’s where he is this morning. But we wouldn’t know.

Campaign spokeswoman Markey Pierre, to whom all media requests must be made, said yesterday afternoon that we’d “have to play it by ear” if we could interview Glover after the results came in.

Didn’t happen.

She didn’t return phone calls last night or this morning for today’s coverage, but not that I’m surprised.

Glover was the only candidate in the field of 11 who didn’t supply us with a direct phone number, cell phone or home number. If we want to set up an interview or photo, Pierre screens the requests. Even the notoriously difficult Ed Bradley was often easier to reach than Glover (though getting him to say anything was another matter).

When I voiced my concerns with Glover, he said that was a decision he made for efficiency’s sake.

Heaven forbid he ever become inefficient.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Mood swings again at Jones party

The latest numbers popped up on the TV screen, and the mood shifted to optimistic again.

Even more people around the TV sets to watch the returns come in.

“This is turning out to be a turnout of historic proportion,” one man said.

Jones' party gets tense

The mood has shifted from optimistic to tense as about 400 people have gathered at the Jones camp to follow election returns.

People are gathering around televisions sets to watch as numbers are releases. There is a definite buzz around the room as people discussed their theories about why the numbers are where they are right now.

McCrery's lead strong

U.S. Rep. Jim McCrery is holding the lead against the three contenders looking to unseat him from the 4th congressional district. With 94 of 629 precincts reporting, McCrery has 8,642 -- or 59 percent -- of the votes.

His closest competitor is Democrat Artis Cash, who received the endorsement of the state Democratic party, with 16 percent or 2,390 votes.

Democrat Patti Cox has 14 percent, or 2,013 votes.

Republican Chester Kelley trails with 10 percent, or 1,506 votes.

And from the Glover party

Times reporter Melody Brumble is at Shreveport mayoral candidate Cedric Glover’s election night party. She phoned in this report:

Applause and cheers rippled through the ballroom at the Clarion Hotel in Shreveport as early results trickled in. Even the waitstaff behind the ballroom danced as applause filtered through the doors.

People started drifting in about 8 p.m., nibbling from an array of food set out. Most milled around the food or clustered around a big screen television set up in the back of the room. The crowd around the television grew as results started to flash on the screen.

At 8:30 p.m., Glover remained at his headquarters on Youree Drive but was expected to show up at the ballroom after results started coming in.

-- Michelle Mahfoufi

Green, blue and white balloons arch over the room at The Clarion Hotel for Cedric Glover's supporters waiting for results. When the first set of numbers came through, an ovation and excitement rippled.

The Larry Ellis Band is warming up and reviewing lyrics to entertain all. One member practices from a crumpled and worn lyrics to Al Green's Let's Stay Together. A few other musicians could be heard in the bathroom.

8:35 pm and Cedric still hasn't shown his face. Results are starting to roll in. Jones was already working his supporters by 8:15. Soon someone will be singing.

-- Alan English

It's 9:30 p.m. and the supporters at Cedric Glover's party at the Clarion Hotel ballroom are still waiting for Glover to arrive, Times reporter Melody Brumble reports from the scene.Glover's mother arrived about 15 minutes ago and was seated at a front table.

The crowd claps and cheers as the returns flash across the television screen.

-- Michelle Mahfoufi

From the Jones camp

Times reporter Alexandyr Kent is at Shreveport mayoral candidate Jerry Jones’ election night party.

Wife Carla led Jones into the LSUS ballroom around 8 p.m. The couple arrived to muted applause that grew louder, as if the crowd was acknowledging the hardship the family has faced in the last week with their 16-year-old daughter’s illness that has left her in the pediatric intensive care unit.

"That’s so cool!" Jones said about the applause. "I look around the room and I see all these people and they really reached out to us. This has really been a grass roots effort. … I want to walk around the room and let them know how much I appreciate them. When it’s all over I’ll be back at the hospital."

A chatty crowd of about 250 people worked their way through a long buffet spread, where cookies were consistently being replenished.

Four TVs in the corner are prepped to post the first returns.

Sue Cook, sitting next to her husband, was excited by the noise.

"I’m just thinking that I want it to hurry up and get it over. I want Jerry Jones to be our next mayor," she said.

Even Willie Horton would be ashamed of this...

Check out this link below to NPR, which has compiled video of some of the nastiest, meanest TV campaign ads - both Democratic and Republican, for those of you all who think we taint our coverage - this side of Willie Horton.

It's often been argued that these sort of ads are precisely the reason why many people stay away from the polls. The logic to that argument is instead of attempting to dissect real issues, of which there are no shortage at this present time in our country, that they confuse and discourage people ... in short, they make everyone lose faith in the worthiness of the candidates. As a result, we see record-low turnouts at the ballot box.

Take a glance at some of these ads, and it's hard to argue.

Pay particular note to the one about Democratic Senate candidate Harold Ford Jr. of Tennessee. Even his Republican opponent denounced it.

Nothing to celebrate?

Wonder how much faith the state's Democratic Party has in unseating U.S. Rep. Jim McCrery tonight?

I'll answer for you: not much.

Conspicuously absent from the list of Democratic candidate celebrations going on in the seven congressional districts throughout the state is the one for the Rev. Artis Cash. In Cash's place is one for local mayoral candidate Cedric Glover.

Cash may have gotten their backing, but as far as their confidence, that's something else completely. For the record, Cash had his party at the Clarion Hotel in the 1400 block of East 70th Street.

While others may feel he's tilting at windmills, Cash borrowed another analogy - this one from the world of sports - to illustrate his hopes of unseating McCrery: "I feel like Cassius Clay going in to fight Sonny Liston. I'm going to shake up, at least, this part of the world."

It may be obvious, but Clay (now Muhammad Ali) flattened the brooding, boorish Liston whom most thought was as unbeatable as a heavyweight champ could be back in 1964.

From the viewpoint here, though, Cash's Clay may be running into Larry Holmes - not quite the greatest but the champ, nonetheless.

The signs of the times

As excited as I've been about today and looking forward to the possibility of history being made in my hometown ( or not) , for a brief second, when I woke up this morning, I'd completely forgotten it was election day.

I heard the buzz of a lawnmower or something going outside of my apartment and I just turned over to go back to sleep and catch some last minute ZZZZ's before my cell phone alarm went off.
Unfortunately, or rather fortunately, I was soon reminded starting with two consecutive text messages forwarded from my friends in other cities reminding me to vote and to forward this reminder to other friends.

Then, around 1 p.m., while I was out pumping gas in my car at the Exxon gas station located at the corner of Youree Drive and Bert Kouns, I heard the non-stop blaring of a megaphone man urging people to "Get out and vote today. You can make a difference!"
My eyes followed the direction of the sound and saw a crowd of what looked like at least 15 or 20 people covered in loud orange and black signs with the name of District D City Council candidate Bryan Wooley displayed on the front.

As I made my way to my precinct in Queensborough to vote, I'd passed hundreds of other signs including Cedric Glover's "Make History, Vote for Cedric Glover."

When my sister and I finally arrived at our district's precinct, located at the old Shreve Memorial Atkins Branch Library, I was happy to find out I wasn't the only one who'd taken heed of all of the signs around me reminding me to vote. Officials said that turnout had been really high so far and noted that my sister was the 200th person to vote. This was around 2 p.m.

Whether Shreveport makes history or not is yet to be seen, but one thing I know for sure: no one will be able to truthfully say they didn't vote because they forgot to.
Figuratively and literally, the signs are all around us.

Glover's political machine and Jones supporters ...

The get-out-the-vote effort was humming from the looks of things at Cedric Glover’s campaign headquarters at 8:45 p.m. Hundreds of workers flowed through the office as names were called out for $75 checks doled out from the center table. Glover campaign T-shirts still numbered 150 inside with about 25 or more outside. This had been going on for a while.

"Are you ready for Glover to be mayor?" barked someone in the middle of the check passing.
"Yeah!" yelled the enthusiastic crowd.

Another T-shirted worker turned away with a check in hand. It isn’t unusual for campaign workers to get paid for a hard days’ work. Fancy campaigns pay big dollars to umbrella organizations to do the same thing. This is just the nitty-gritty work of closing down a campaign.
It’s a reminder that The Times and other media will need to follow up on campaign finance reports.

If you have any story tips, send to the reporters on this blog.

Other notes: The crowd was filled with well-known figures like former Shreveport Police Chief Jim Roberts and Caddo Parish Commissioner Bob Brown. They were in the crowd with the likes of State representative Mike Powell at the Jones campaign event at LSUS. A simple fare of finger food and political chatting around the television were set at the Jones camp. Roberts took some shots at me for The Times endorsement of Cedric Glover. He explained he’d followed Glover closely and wasn’t very impressed. I told him Glover had a record of building coalitions. I guess I should have asked if Roberts support for Jones included offering ideas from his experience building coalitions in the community. Remember, Roberts resigned amid the controversy of the Marquise Hudspeth shooting.

At The Clarion Hotel, the crowd waiting on Cedric Glover was a little more festive. Entertainment was ready to perform for a somewhat younger crowd.

A helping hand

Republican Jerry Jones and Democrat Cedric Glover are getting help from their respective parties today.

Both state parties have workers going door-to-door, waving signs and calling voters they have identified as likely to vote for their candidate.

So why all of the out-of-town attention on a local election?

“It’s an important race,” state Democratic party executive director Danny Ford said. “Shreveport is now the second-largest city in the state of Louisiana. It’s important to us to see a Democrat in office who can help the city and state as well.”

James Quinn, executive director of the Republican Party of Louisiana, acknowledges the efforts the Democrats have put on rallying Glover’s supporters.

“It’s going to be close,” Quinn said.

And while the national midterm elections have garnered a lot of attention, a lack of “serious” challengers to the area’s Republican congressman, U.S. Rep. Jim McCrery, won’t help boost Republican turnout, Quinn said.

“People who show up to vote, they’re showing up to vote for the mayor of Shreveport,” he said.

The big day

Finally, after all those months of campaigning, we’re just hours away from knowing who the next mayor of Shreveport will be. Neil Geppelt, a displaced New Orleans resident living in Shreveport, is already looking to tomorrow.

He suggested we ask the new mayor the reader-submitted questions from last week’s cancelled forum to find out what we could expect from Jerry Jones or Cedric Glover once they take office.

What would you like to see covered as we head into an era of new leadership?

Friday, November 03, 2006


A reader posted this comment after a recent story:

“When Glover’s wife is next to him, it always makes me think about Dr.Evil and Mini-Me from the AustinPowers movie for some reason. I don't know why, but it honestly is the first thing that pops into my head when they show the two of them next to each other on the tube.”

If that’s the case, who’s the little guy in this photo?

They have a way with words

I look forward to the press releases the state Democratic Party sends me. They’re always fun to read:

“Modern-day Sodom and Gomorrah: What is Rodney Alexander running – a congressional office or a den of deceit and debauchery?” said the release that came in the middle of the Mark Foley sex scandal.

“Craig Romero, whose own personal and professional finances are entangled with nepotism and back room deals, wants to attack Congressman (Charlie) Melancon on of all things – ethics violations!” the party blasted in response to attack ads against Melancon.

“Boys and girls, can you say ‘hypocrite’? When it comes to mudslinging, Jerry Jones thinks it’s OK to throw it, but can’t take it,” was the one that came earlier this week in reference to Shreveport mayoral candidate Jerry Jones’ ads about opponent Cedric Glover’s record.

But the one that had me doubled over was in response to Sen. John Kerry’s botched joke that people who don’t study and do their homework were likely to “get stuck in Iraq.”

“Earlier this week, Sen. John Kerry misspoke and it was an unfortunate remark he made regarding our troops in Iraq.”

The e-mail arrived with a note reminding voters to “stay focused.”

Focused on what? The issues?

And while we're on the topic of Democrats ....

The political action committee of the Louisiana Democratic State Central Committee filed its campaign finance report showing who gave money that helped pay for the attack ad against Jerry Jones in the days before the Shreveport mayoral primary election.The party, which would have had a celebration if it got a dime out of local Democrats earlier this year, raised $60,100 in Shreveport-Bossier in two days.

The money came from six contributors:

Yor-Wic Construction, Bossier City: $20,000

Louisiana General Agency: $10,000

RHB Design/Build LLC, Shreveport: $5,000

Richie Richie & Oberle, Shreveport: $5,000

Cedric B. Glover for Mayor: $100

But the most interesting donation of $20,000 came from this contributor, the only donor out of 71 that didn’t include an address: DVI Shreveport.

Look to City Council minutes from 2002 for an explanation:

. . . proposed by the City showing the 1,000 foot spacing around the proposed Deja Vu strip club, a legal property or title description of DVI Shreveport LC property, that is the Deja Vu property, that's their corporate name DVI Shreveport, a legal property or title description of the old T & P Railroad Company which is located on market, north of Caddo . . .

Anyone want to connect the dots?

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Getting criminals out...

The folks running for spots in Shreveport's government sure are using commercials to get their messages across.

And now I've got to hand it to mayor-hopeful Jerry Jones. He was very specific about his intentions to "get tough and stay tough on crime" if he were elected to the contested post. His method of doing this is crystal clear: "get the criminals out," he said in his latest commercial.

If it were that easy to get criminals out of the area I'm sure police in Shreveport and every other city in America would have done it by now, right? Since there are no crime-free cities, fighting crime must be a difficult job.

This city does need to "get tough" on crime, as Jones suggests. But My only question for Jones is: where are the criminals going to go?

We all know not to Minden, Marshall, or Longview.

Introducing our latest acquisition: the chameleon reporter

This week I’m an avid supporter of Democratic Shreveport mayoral candidate Cedric Glover, according to the readers who’ve been following this week’s stories in The Times about the campaign ads by opponent Republican Jerry Jones.
Two weeks ago, I was an obvious Jones supporter, otherwise I wouldn’t have pointed out that most of the money Glover raised just before the primary came from out of town.
A month before that, I was so glaringly independent that I must be a Max Malone supporter.
And by the way, I’m also a black Muslim Middle Eastern Italian Yankee with Cajun roots who barely graduated from high school whose political leanings du jour come from daily 3 p.m. conference calls with corporate.
At least, so they say.