Who's your choice for Mayor in 2015?

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Southern Democrats: Down, Not Dead

That's the title of the Viewpoint piece that I wrote for the Flyer this week, which you can find right here.  Thanks to Jackson Baker for allowing me to write this column about where we are and where we need to go from here.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Yes, that's a 2015 Memphis Mayor's poll

And, of course, it's unscientific as possible, but it will also be fun!

If you vote for NONE of the Above, please list in comments whom you would support or write in, please!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Vibinc takes it to the next level

Steve Ross presents the first episode of THE STEVE ROSS SHOW at Vibinc.  His first guest is law professor and former County Commissioner Steve Mulroy, go watch it!!!!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Eleven months to ANOTHER election!

As Jackson Baker and Kyle Veazey have noted,  The 2014 state & Federal elections had not finished, yet the 2015 city elections appeared to be starting, even though the filing deadline is not until next July.

Mayor Wharton sent out an email earlier this week to his supporters that he was in it to win it, but Veazey noted he only had about 115K in his campaign account.  One would think he could raise more quickly, since that would indicate the business community is behind him.  Jim Strickland has been telling anyone who will listen that he is running for re-election to his Council District 5 seat, to which I expect he would have only token opposition.

Funny thing though.  Veazey tweeted a response from Strickland to Wharton's letter, which can be seen here.   Considering that most of the MPD rank and file is furious with him for Strickland's involvement in the reduction of benefits to retirees, this is really interesting.  I have to believe that even if the municipal unions put up a challenger to Jim, he would be VERY difficult to beat in that district.  I also see no reason to disbelieve him when he says he is not challenging Wharton.

About challenging Wharton.....

So far, the names mentioned have included City Councilor Harold Collins (Whitehaven), former County Commissioner James Harvey, former state representative and City Councilor Carol Chumney, and Memphis Police Association head Mike Williams.  I have also heard, just not as often, that Reverend Kenneth Whalum might also get in the race.

If all of them get in, Mayor Wharton will walk away with it.  Remember 1999, 2007, and even 2011, when all of the anti-Administration votes were split among several candidates?  That will happen yet again if all, or as few as TWO others run against the mayor.

If Wharton is in and Strickland is not, the Mayor will have all the money he needs from the business community.  He also has one of the two Democratic (yeah, I know, it's non-partisan, Meh.)  organizations in this town that can produce victories, the other being that of Congressman Steve Cohen.

This is not to say Wharton doesn't have problems of his own.  The working class members of the community (of ALL colors) are not thrilled with his stands against the municipal unions.  To be truthful, in my opinion, if the business community DID bail on the Mayor, his base would suddenly shrink to his Heiskell Farms neighborhood and a few houses in Stonewall.

However, in order to beat him as it stands right now, you need a unified, organized campaign to defeat him behind ONE candidate and one candidate alone.  Who is that candidate?  Right now, we really don't know.

My suggestions is this: a backroom meeting among all of the candidates interested in becoming Mayor.  The question to each of these candidates is this:  Are you committed to running because you want to be Mayor or because you want to beat AC Wharton?  If it's the former,and not the latter, then that is a problem.  If every candidate looked at the others and said you need to get behind me, and they all ran, then Wharton cruises.  If, however, you are all serious about changing the direction at City Hall, who could you support instead of yourself?

Only time will tell about this; like I said, it's a long time to July, but I would hope that this is sorted out before then.  If it's not, then the Mayor CAN relax, not that he will.

In other news, as newly elected State Senator Lee Harris considers vacating his City Council seat, names are popping up to replace him in District 7.  Former interim Councilor Berlin Boyd is out there, Eric Dunn has indicated interest in the seat, and SCDP Parliamentarian Thurston Smith is exploring a candidacy and meeting with potential supporters next week.  That will be a very interesting race, to be sure.

So, I would like to hear your thoughts in the comments. Is Wharton a lock or a goner?  What about the rest of the Council?  Let me know!

Monday, November 10, 2014

What the hell, it's been 10 years already??

Happy 10th Birthday to the Left Wing Cracker blog!

Ten years ago today, in the rage and aftermath of the re-election of the worst President this country has ever seen, I started writing, when blogging was all the rage.

This wasn't the first political blog here, you had The Pesky Fly on the left and Mike Hollihan on the right back then.  I was inspired by SouthKnoxBubba, which disappeared and resurfaced as KnoxViews, which still inspires me today.    While there aren't as many blogs as before, there are those, like Vibinc, that provide terrific information and opinion and inspire me to keep writing.

I look back at that first post and see how simple it was and how much energy it had.  I also see that one of my first commenters is sadly, no longer with us.  Things happen in a decade.

You were with us in great times, and the worst of all possible times.  I appreciate you more than you know.

So, where do we go from here?  Well, I hope to have something up by the end of the week on the massacre of last week, and something on the 2015 City Elections.

Thank you for coming this far with this blog, and I hope we can keep writing posts you want to read and share.

Steve

Wednesday, November 05, 2014

Was I right or wrong?

Let me put myself to the test from last night's predictions:

Locally, I see no seats changing hands, but House 96 will be far closer than anyone expected.  Haslam will win, and so will Alexander, again with a much smaller margin than expected as the Carr/Tea Partiers skip the race.
Oops.  McManus won 62-38, but read Dwayne's comments below, I made a mistake on saying it was 2-1 in House 96, Haslam and Alexander won, the latter by 2-1 as well.  I guess the TPers held their noses.   Next?

The Amendments?  1 and 2 will FAIL, 3 and 4 will PASS, and the passing of 3 will be a tragedy for this state for the foreseeable future.
They ALL passed, and while I can live with 2 and 4, the fact that Tennessee women voluntarily gave control of their reproductive functions to the General Assembly astounds and infuriates me.  As for 3, the anti-Income Tax amendment?  That's abominable.  Can it get worse?

Predictions for the state House at the end of the night: 73 R, 26 D.  The Senate will be awful, 28 R, 5 D with no Democratic seats outside Memphis or Nashville, rock bottom. 
Sadly, I almost hit the Exacta here, as the final totals for the state House are 74 R, 25 D.  We lost Gloria Johnson in Knoxville and John Tidwell in New Johnsonville, but stunningly kept the seat formerly held by Charles Curtiss of Sparta, now held by Kevin Dunlap, representing Grundy, Warren and White Counties.  David Shepherd of the Dickson area held his seat by 16 votes despite having SIX mailers against him hit on Election Day.

The Senate?  Just as I called it, we lost the seats vacated by Charlotte Burks of Monterey and Lowe Finney, who is running for mayor of Jackson next year.  Democrats have NO Senate seats east of Nashville and NONE outside Memphis and Nashville.   Let's just move on.

The surprise of the night?  When all those good Republicans in TN-04 who voted for Jim Tracy turn on Scott DesJarlais and vote in Lenda Sherrell, with the thought that they will come back with Tracy in 2 years and beat her.  Of course, it will be a Presidential year and more difficult to do, but..... 
Translation: Whoever the GOP nominee is could make a sacrifice to Baal on the courthouse steps and these yahoos will vote for him.  Lenda Sherrell ran a good race, but these decent God-fearing white folk will never vote for a Democrat again since they elected that, well, you know, as President.

But, what about the US Senate?

Nationally?  I think we hold onto the US Senate, 51-49.  Mark Pryor survives in Arkansas, Grimes loses in KY because she ran away from her President, Nunn wins in GA. 

Oy.  the only thing I got right was Grimes, who deserved what she got.   We have a lot of work to do nationally, at the state level, and locally, which I will address in the next day or so.  Gonna have to put that 2015 mayor's race post back a day or two, sorry, Kyle Veazey!  :)

Tuesday, November 04, 2014

Well, I'm probably wrong but...

Marek is up with interesting predictions, go check them out.  The polls have just closed, so we will see in 2 hours or longer if I am right with my picks below or just full of shit as usual.

Locally, I see no seats changing hands, but House 96 will be far closer than anyone expected.  Haslam will win, and so will Alexander, again with a much smaller margin than expected as the Carr/Tea Partiers skip the race.

The Amendments?  1 and 2 will FAIL, 3 and 4 will PASS, and the passing of 3 will be a tragedy for this state for the foreseeable future.

Predictions for the state House at the end of the night: 73 R, 26 D.  The Senate will be awful, 28 R, 5 D with no Democratic seats outside Memphis or Nashville, rock bottom.

The surprise of the night?  When all those good Republicans in TN-04 who voted for Jim Tracy turn on Scott DesJarlais and vote in Lenda Sherrell, with the thought that they will come back with Tracy in 2 years and beat her.  Of course, it will be a Presidential year and more difficult to do, but.....

Nationally?  I think we hold onto the US Senate, 51-49.  Mark Pryor survives in Arkansas, Grimes loses in KY because she ran away from her President, Nunn wins in GA.

Well, we will see what happens; I am headed to THE WAREHOUSE for the re-election party for my Congressman, Steve Cohen.

Watch this space later in the week with my thoughts on the 2015 Mayor's race, which, if you haven't noticed, has already begun.