Wednesday, August 25, 2010
Democratic Councillor Defends Walkout
A Democratic City-County Councillor contacted me earlier today, and we had a talk about the events this person said led up to the Democratic walkout. This just in, it wasn’t the budget.
Despite some of the media and blogosphere depictions, the Democratic walkout at Monday’s City-County Council as the Mayor presented his budget was orchestrated to show the displeasure many Councillors have with how the Mayor has treated Democrats and the Democratic caucus, in general, since he was sworn in as Mayor in 2008.
This Councillor told me that repeated attempts to meet with the Mayor over various proposals and ordinances have been ignored or pushed aside.
The Councillor told me that the difficulties faced by them are not foreign. This individual told me that many on the Republican side of the aisle have been brushed aside by Mayor Ballard and his staff. Reportedly, that boiled over to a shouting match between the Republicans and the Mayor when he attended a caucus with one respected Republican Councillor telling the Mayor, “Even (Mayor Bart) Peterson met more with us than you have.”
The Democrat told me that the Mayor’s staff has not bothered to show up to town hall meetings put on by Democratic Councillors and has shown a general lack of respect towards anyone on the “D” side of the aisle.
On Monday, the Councillor told me that those that walked out of the meeting did so in a quiet and organized manner. It was a coordinated, and it was directly aimed at the Mayor.
The budget process, the Councillor tells me, will allow the Democrats to be heard before final approval. “We are more than willing to have a discussion about the budget with the Mayor,” said the Councillor.