Thursday, February 04, 2010

The Huck Upchuck Election Endorsements

The Huck Upchuck has promised election endorsements, and so he delivers:

For mayor, The Huck Upchuck endorses Mitch Landrieu. I have leaned in Mitch's direction since he entered the race, but I have not been willing to give up on James Perry. Even though I'm endorsing Landrieu, I still profess a liking for James Perry. The critical thing for me was experience. Landrieu has loads of it and knows the ins and outs of effective governance; Perry just doesn't have enough of it -- yet. I think, perhaps, that Perry's mayoral aspirations were a bit too ambitious for his first crack at an elected government office. I think he would make a fabulous State Representative or a credible City Council candidate. I'd advise Perry to cut his teeth at this level before making a push for Mayor. Should he do that, I can easily see James Perry as Mayor one day in the not-to-distant future. All the other major candidates simply make me ill. John Georges is a certified unprincipled moron, which makes the many endorsements he has received all the more surprising to me. The only reason I can see for this is the $green$. It's actually disheartening. Troy Henry strikes me as an arrogant blowhard, prone to pull the race card to score cheap political points, who also feels entitled to the job. No thanks, Mr. Henry, but we've just endured 8 years of this very kind of leadership under Nagin and this city doesn't need a repeat of that. Rob Couhig will never be able to live down his "mistake" in supporting Nagin over Landrieu the last time around, thus leading the conservative Republican establishment of NOLA, such as it is, to sell out this city to the cynicism of Nagin. [Aside: And though I am very fond of many of the local Georgetown folks who are circling the wagons around Couhig, I think their loyalty is misguided. Couhig would be as polarizing to this city as Nagin ended up being, which I think will continue the disastrous legacy of divisive racial politics for this city.] And Nadine Ramsey is just too small fry and seemingly too out of it to exercise any kind of leadership that this city needs. Landrieu has it all and he far outstrips any of the other candidates in this race in terms of experience and competency in governing. Besides which, he's a Jesuit Alum and a Lusher Dad, just like I am! How can I go against that?!

For City Council At-Large seats, I recommend Arnie Fielkow and Nolan Marshall. I think Arnie is still a refreshing choice and an independent voice in a city still captured in many ways by entrenched political factions. He still seems above the fray when it comes to insider political networks. And so does Nolan Marshall. And both men are very good friends of the Latino community here in New Orleans and very attentive to issues that Latinos care about.

For District "A" Councilmember, progressives should clearly choose Susan Guidry. She's worthy of your vote on her own merits; but the fact that she's not Jay Batt is also reason enough to elect her.

For District "B" Councilmember, my district, I am supporting Stacy Head for re-election. Stacy Head has been a controversial character and I've not been pleased with everything she's said and done, but I like her spunk and think that the city government needs someone like her as part of it. Besides, she was very responsive to my complaints about the Parking Ticket Gestapo incident at the Palmer Park Arts Market some months ago. Even if we put all the other stuff aside, she gets my vote just for that.

For the other District races, I have no preferences nor recommendations.

For the citywide single assessor position, I'm going with Janis Lemle. She's competent and reform-minded. I think she will continue to do a very balanced and fair job of assessing properties in a manner far removed from the insider sweetheart wheeling and dealing that the other two major candidates are too closely associated with. I didn't like how her boss, Nancy Marshall, rode into the office of assessor for the 6th District (my district) on the cynical "IQ" (I Quit) ticket; but I've always supported the reformist cause as long as it was aligned with good, procedural democratic practices. Lemle's candidacy reflects that reformist impulse, and her path to the office is fully within the good, procedural democratic process. She's not promising to quit if elected, but to actually care for and administer the office well.

Finally, for State Senator for the 5th Senatorial District (also my district), I think Karen Carter-Peterson should get the job (or I at least think she will be more effective in the job than her competitor, Irma Muse Dixon). I'm not an unabashed fan of Carter Peterson, but I recognize her talent and her influence in the Louisiana State Legislature, and I am convinced that she can represent our district strongly and well in Baton Rouge.

As for the other, remaining races, I have no special endorsements to make.

And so goes the electoral recommendations of The Huck Upchuck. If you haven't already voted early, make sure to vote this Saturday.

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