Wednesday, February 3, 2010

GOP Council Diversity Drops 50%

Kent Smith, the African-American GOP At-Large City-County Councilor, announced today he's resigning because a new Department of Defense directive precludes active duty service by elected officials. In Smith's statement, he said he could pursue a waiver that would allow him to continue, but his current duties with the Indiana National Guard are too time-consuming.

It will be interesting to see who the GOP throws into this spot, which they will want to keep African-American for reasons I'll discuss in a post later this week. Aaron Williams, the son of Deputy Mayor Olgen Williams, was already looking at an at-large run in 2011. It would certainly help his chances if he can get his feet wet now.

The only other GOP African-American whose name I've heard is Ike Randolph. Randolph, who currently serves as Governor Daniel's Executive Director of Faith-Based Initiatives, was a counselor until 2007. However, he filed a Statement of Organization on January 15, 2008, as a candidate for Council District 1, which is currently held by Democrat Jose Evans. Randolph also filed a year-end 2009 campaign finance report, but that report did not list anything under "Office Sought."

By accounts I've heard, Aaron Williams is an engaging guy and young and energetic is the new in thing in politics, but I'm not sure how having Williams as a city-county councilor isn't like having the mayor on the council himself. Seriously, how hard could the younger Williams buck the Mayor on an issue with his own father serving as Deputy Mayor? That could make for a pretty awkward Christmas.


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6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Bob Grand runs everything.

Indy Student said...

LOVE the headline

Paul K. Ogden said...

Mark my words, they will look for an African-American who won't ask questions and will be a rubber stamp for the administration. That rules out Ike Randolph. I'm thinking it might be Dorothy Henry who simple rubber stamped everything when she was on the CIB.

Had Enough Indy? said...

Unfortunately for the City and the Council, the Republicans have been closing ranks on every issue affecting the Mayor. So, it hardly matters whose father works on the 25th floor.

Henry was not impressive while on her Citywide tour, with Barney Levengood, promoting a bailout for the CIB. But, then again, I don't get a vote in the matter.

It sounds like Smith is already off the Council. So, until the caucus votes, the Rs don't have a majority.

your bookie said...

Dorothy Henry: BOOSTER: Mayor Ballard and the GOP Party. PLUS – Would be extremely loyal to the mayor and the administration. She’s viewed as manageable because her husband is the City’s Director of Human Resources. Articulate yet she’s soft-spoken. Not someone to embarrass herself, the Party or administration. NEGS: May be perceived as an extension of the 25th floor. DEFLATOR: Gary Welsh who really hasn’t found an African-American anywhere he doesn’t have a visceral reaction to with will be vicious and relentless in his attack of her. Don’t be surprise if Tom John doesn’t put his full support behind her. This is an opportunity to replace his guy with his someone he would prefer and would be loyal to him and not the Mayor. ODDS: 2:1


Chris Douglas: BOOSTER: Gary Welsh, (Tom John to a lesser extent), and the Downtown GOP crowd. PLUS: Articulate and successful businessman. He would be the first openly gay Republican to hold a local office. This is Tom John’s preferred candidate which would accomplish two goals- short term give him a subtle counterbalance to Ballard’s power of the local legislative agenda; long-term to systematically displace socially conservative Republicans with more socially moderate elected officials for the local GOP party. NEGS: While perceived by many, as a sharp businessman Chris is a single-issue candidate who wears his sexual orientation on his sleeve. He doesn’t handle verbal confrontation or those who may disagree with him on an issue very well and is known to have very thin skin.
DEFLATOR: Those PC and operative who see Chris as an always-run opportunist (i.e. Marvin Scott) who perpetually seek office without investing in broadband relationship building. And those who would see him not working with the Ballard Administration on key issues. ODDS: 5:1


Aaron Williams: BOOSTER: Deputy Mayor Williams and Mayor Ballard to a lesser extent. While a fresh young face with instant grassroots “street cred” and appeal to youthful voters, Aaron would be a bit of a wildcard for the Ballard administration but a good second choice. Again youthful, charismatic and has the ability to carry a Republican message in areas that are traditionally barren ground. His name on the ticket could create a tremendous opportunity to introduce young voters of all races and ethnic backgrounds to the GOP tent. NEGS: The fact that his father is Deputy Mayor may have some PC cringe at the family ties that are would be established. Some have also questioned his work demeanor and focus. DEFLATOR: Gary Welsh has already started his shots over the bow. As with Dorothy Henry it is hard not to see Gary’s attacks as anything but a thinly disguised bigotry as no one has ever heard or read anything from him that compliments any African-American Republican, Democrat or Independent. Tom John will join in the under the radar whisper campaign as Aaron would not be as controllable for him as a Chris of even Dorothy. ODDS: 3:1

Remember: This is a very important appointment process as GOP has 15 votes; DEMS 13 and the LIB have 1 vote. A wrong pick tips the balance internally in the GOP and could determine who is really running the city.

DARK HORSES:

Gary Welsh Running- 100:1 it is easier to run one's mouth, than for office.

Paul Ogden Running- 50:1 Paul knows the system and rightly or wrongly fears it. If he would enter could throw the race up in the air.

Anonymous said...

Oops forgot this DARK HORSE: Ike Randolph. He would need to resign from his full time State job to take a part-time political position. ODDS: 1000:1; Ditto for Liz Karlson. Now back to your regular programming.