Monday, January 8, 2018

Council Shocker: Clay Elected Council President

Pastor Stephen Clay
In a shocker, Pastor Stephen Clay was elected President of the Indianapolis/Marion County City-County Council tonight by a 14-11 vote.

Clay, Monroe Gray, LaKeisha Jackson, Duke Oliver and Joe Simpson joined 11 Republicans to overthrow former President Maggie Lewis. Under-fire GOP Councillor Jeff Miller as well as Councillor Brian Mowery joined the Democrats in voting to keep Lewis as President.

My sources told me, as recently as a few days ago, that Clay stood little chance of becoming Council President. He was expected to get only a handful of votes. This, to me, is a surprise along the lines of Bart Peterson losing to Greg Ballard in the 2007 Mayoral Election.

It's also not particularly good news for Indianapolis. Lewis was a tremendous Council President who drew wide praise from both sides of the aisle. I guess she's going to spend her time picking some political knives out of her back. Eh tu GOP?

Republicans, of course, have called for the resignation of Councillor Jeff Miller. Charges were filed in November against Miller accusing him of inappropriately touching two young girls. Last week, allegations of inappropriate behavior towards a young man came back to light in a detailed Indy Politics report. Clay denies the allegations, and no charges were ever filed. The Indy Star took an even deeper look at the matter in this report by James Briggs.

It should be very interesting to see a number of things...

  • the relationship between Clay and the Republican and Democratic caucuses
  • the relationship between Clay and the Mayor Joe Hogsett
  • what political machinations went on behind the scenes to win the votes 
  • what kind of Council President Clay will be
Republicans and some Democrats united to overthrow beloved Council President Rozelle Boyd a few years back with Steve Talley as President. Talley proved to be an effective leader. Monroe Gray took over as Council President until Democrats lost the majority in the 2007 election cycle.

Clay was appointed to the Council after Talley was elected Lawrence Township Trustee in 2014. He was elected to his own term on the Council in 2015 by a margin of 84.2 percent to 15.8 percent over Terri Miller-Penquite.

In other news, Zach Adamson was reelected as Vice President of the Council.


IFDFIRE said...

Great in continuing status quo? Hopefully he will speak truth to power and break the cycle of corporate welfare !

johnnystir said...

Politically, his presidency will now depend on mollifying the Republican caucus. Mike McQuillen has become the most powerful person on the Council.