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Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Tuesday feast of politics lives on at Brother's

Brother's Seafood downtown is filling a void left by the closing of Pete Harris Cafe. Brother's served as a fine venue to Louisiana House District 1 and 4 candidate forums in the last week.
This morning's packed house offered a feast of District 4 politics in the standing tradition of the Tuesday Morning Breakfast Group who used to make Pete Harris their home.

Three current and former elected officials were perhaps the most recognizable candidates campaigning for House District 4, the north Shreveport legislative district formerly held by newly elected Shreveport Mayor Cedric Glover. Councilman Calvin Lester is the current Shreveport City Councilman for the area. His opponents include former council member Larry Ferdinand and former Caddo Parish Commissioner Patrick Williams. The fourth participant is political newcomer Reginald Johnson. In addition to breakfast plates, candidate push cards were scattered around the tables.

Ferdinand emphasized his experience in city and state government again and again. Johnson explained his studious approach. Lester stood on recent action taken as a councilman and his passion for public service. Williams lamented the woes of the hurricanes and read from prepared remarks for his closing to make sure he hit all of his intended points about helping people.

For more on this forum, come read Loresha Wilson’s report at and pick up tomorrow's Times.

Critical issues facing this district are education, economic development and jobs and health care. They occasionally differed on issue approaches, but occasionally fell into solidarity. All support an increased minimum wage, for instance.

A full restaurant of diners and coffee drinkers peered through plants and around pillars from every corner of Brother's. Co. Moderator Craig Lee, currently embroiled in a public controversy with Council member Joyce Bowman, was relatively tame in his questions. There were still a few agenda-driven questions but Tuesday regulars have come to expect them. Besides, his questions have a way of making you think.

If you haven't gone to a TMBG gathering, everyone is welcome, and the breakfast is usually good too. The convenience of the new downtown venue may give a whole new crowd an opportunity to drop in.

Next week's speaker: Greenwood Mayor Earnest Lampkins. The recent shooting "at" his home will certainly be a topic. Dan Turner's story on Greenwood is a must read noted by Lampkins last week as he walked off with several copies of the paper in his hands.

Go ahead and show up for breakfast next week. You may get more than a meal.
--By Alan English, executive editor


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