Friday, June 26, 2009

The law of unintended consequences, or say hi to Mayor Joyce Avery!



Yeah, that's how my mind has been going, or I wouldn't be up at 1:30 in the freaking morning. OK, this CA piece got me to thinking, so follow along with me.

Let's just say for shits and giggles, that we have a special City election on October 8 (just inside the 90-day limit to pick a new mayor after a vacancy) and that County Mayor AC Wharton wins. (Myron, Carol, James Harvey - put those frowns away, this is speculative, just play along with me!) Well, he can't hold two seats at once, can he? So, he's got to resign as County Mayor, creating a vacancy.
Well, it just so happens that September 1, the NEW County year kicks in, and out goes Chair Deidre Malone (D-2), and in comes probable new Chair (and current Pro Tem), Joyce Avery (R-4). If Wharton wins the City race and resigns, Chair Avery becomes Interim Mayor Avery.
However, here's where the next bit of intrigue comes into play. Avery could serve all the way to September 1, 2010, the end of her term; however, with a 8-5 Democratic majority, that is not likely. Besides, the term interim is just that, as the Commission would be charged with appointing a new County Mayor, like any other County vacancy.
Who then, for Mayor? Well, with an 8-5 majority (and doesn't the appointment of Matt Kuhn to fill David Lillard's seat look mighty damn prescient now?), the Democrats COULD select the outgoing Chair (and potential Democratic nominee in 2010) Deidre Malone. Smart move, eh? Well, not when A) the GOP would be REALLY pissed and B) there could be Democratic opposition to this move.
From whom, you might ask? Well, how about the sage of Whitehaven, the best little Picnic-thrower himself, Commissioner Sidney Chism (D-3)?? Remember, Chism is NOT backing Malone, but his friend Harold Byrd for the Democratic nomination, and he sure as hell doesn't want to see Malone be the potential incumbent next year.
Now, the CA article (as well as other commissioners, privately) have suggested that Chism or Commissioner Henri Brooks (D-2) could serve as Mayor until next year. For Chism especially, this could give him a way to leave politics at the top, retiring as Mayor of Shelby County.
Or, he could come back, run for two more terms on the Commission (because, I believe, this would take him out from the term limits provision, making him a new electee). Or, he could do something else entirely, like suggest to Byrd that he'd like to keep the Mayor's job and maybe Harold should run for something else.
This, of course, would set up yet another nightmare scenario with the potential to tear the local Party in two (as if the 9th District race won't do that on its own!) with Malone and Chism going at it hammer and tong. I suspect this is not likely, but it is VERY possible that Chism may be the next Mayor of Shelby County, if only for a few months.
Too bad I'm still on antibiotics, because I could really use a drink right now! Good night!

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Tear the Party in two!!!!! Heaven forbid (rolling eyes).

I suggest that Del Gill be appointed to the County Mayor position. We would have Roderick Ford as CAO. All County employees who did not vote in the Democratic primary for the last 6 years would be fired. All County Departments would have a racially proportionate balance, based upon Democratic strength in the County.

Commission meetings would set set national records for length, with the mayor dominating 80% of the time talking.

Tom Guleff said...

Interesting.

I am waiting to see how many people start throwing punches at AC Wharton for the city mayor's position. Should be a nice dog pile. No question, AC is in a strong position. The question remains, can AC take the city into a new direction or is he Herenton 2.0 (with gentle persona upgrade). City Hall will need a good scrubbing !!

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