Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Don't give me ideas, Leon.

There's no link at Leon Cannizzaro's website, but his latest campaign ad features endorsements from Sidney Torres and Marlin Gusman. Even though neither has been accused of any wrongdoing, Torres and Gusman's names have come up in connection with the most expensive, and most suspicious, contract decisions of the Nagin and Morial administrations. Apparently, the ad has been out for a few weeks (it's also on YouTube), but I saw it for the first time tonight.

Well, you can guess where this is going. First Cannizzaro/Gusman Google search led to a typical, take with a grain of salt nola.com comment, but I had to check out the Schultz connection that he mentioned. I can't find a working link, but from a 2002 T/P article*:
Longtime Morial consultant Bill Schultz is managing Criminal District Court Judge Leon Cannizzaro ’s run for a separate Appeals Court seat and is also consulting on Municipal Court Judge John Shea’s re-election campaign.

That would be an incredibly stupid commercial, except for the fact it probably helps Cannizzarro. I still think that Capitelli's first attack ad should have been much more low key, something like: "Capitelli: endorsed by prosecutors, Cannizzaro: endorsed by politicians." Seriously, I normally have nothing but scorn for "outsider" campaigns (not to imply that Capitelli's running as an outsider), but do we really want a D.A. who's the choice of so many of the city's established politicians?

*Morial stays low, but his allies run many shows
Times-Picayune, The (New Orleans, LA) - Saturday, August 24, 2002
Author: Stephanie Grace and Frank Donze Staff writer

In all fairness, is it possible to be a non-Republican politician and not have interacted with the non-Republican political elites of the last 20 years? I an into this with a Capitelli-supporting neighbor when I circulated an email about Capitelli siding with the plaintiff in a SLAPP lawsuit. He through around Pappy Barre's name but no evidence. I've heard more of that guilt by association nonsense, but nothing substantial, so I've dismissed it. It's just typical political whispering.

I'm basing my support of Cannizzaro on (politically astute) attorneys I know. He was one tough judge and I think that's as good a recommendation as being endorsed by procesutors.

If anyone has a real reason why I should vote for Capitelli over Cannizzaro, why are they waiting to share it?
I don't think it's a good idea to rely on a local DA as the main investigator of public corruption -- it would be asking a politician to police other pols anywhere, a DA's office main concern should be violent crime in a city like N.O. That said, seeing that one candidate has the overwhelming support of the power structure that's robbed the city blind for years pushes me the other way. If you advertise your support from Marlin Gusman and Dwight McKenna's piece of crap "newspaper," don't expect my vote. I wouldn't use that as a reason to try to convince other people to vote for Capitelli, but some things invite comment.
Isn't it nice to be in the situation where we must decide between two very good candidates? Not every race we get to do that is it? Either one of these guys is going to tighten things up a great deal.

And then there is the House race. I know this is a day late and a dollar short, but why the hell did someone in the democratic leadership not step in and say "Troy Carter, James Carter, you guys step down and endorse Cedric." "If the white chick beats you guys and gets to the runoff then we all lose!"

And so here we are in this "vote for the bimbo...it's important" situation. Makes me want to puke.

Where are the leaders of this land?
I don't know, Boathead. After the last two elections, I'd like to see somebody ask Byron Lee (or whoever takes his place in the next election), or some of the Jefferson pols who publicly endorse him, something like "there are two congressional districts that are primarily located in the GNO area, why do you think that both should be represented by a Jefferson Parish official?"

Beyond that, I was almost as cynical about Richmond as Dambala and Adrastos were about Karen Carter. I don't know about the reports of strong connections to Jefferson, but Richmond lobbied the city council to approve the expensive garbage contracts two years ago and to drop the attempt to renegotiate last year (that's another endorsement that Cannizzaro trumpets, BTW). I wouldn't totally rule out the suggestion that Richmond entered the election to help split the anti-Jefferson vote, but I'll acknowledge that it seems far-fetched. I think that a congressional seat is too big a prize for the rest of the factions to cede to one without a fight, though.
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