[Marxism] The City Council race in Cincinnati

Mark Lause MLause at cinci.rr.com
Fri Aug 24 09:30:16 MDT 2007

Although President Christopher Smitherman of the local NAACP announced his
candidacy for the City Council as a Green Party candidate, the national
organization has stepped in to insist that he either step aside as the
president of the local branch or not run.  The objection was not to the
Green affiliation.


Smitherman's presidency of the Cincinnati NAACP has transformed the branch,
adding an average of 100 new members monthly.  His decision to continue
building up the organization rather than making a bid for the council at
this point is entirely reasonable.



Mark L..  


"Perhaps it is a universal truth that the loss of liberty at home is to be
charged against provisions against danger, real or pretended from abroad."
--- James Madison to Thomas Jefferson, May 13, 1798 

-----Original Message-----
From: swohiogreens at yahoogroups.com [mailto:swohiogreens at yahoogroups.com] On
Behalf Of Gwen Marshall of SWOHGP
Sent: Friday, August 24, 2007 11:03 AM
To: Southwest Ohio Green Party
Cc: Ohio Greens Greens
Subject: [swohiogreens] Smitherman decides against race for council - Justin
Jeffre is running Green


Although the Board of Elections and the Enquirer were surprised that Chris
Smitherman didn't file to run for City Council, the SWOHGP - Coordinating
Committee was not surprised. One of the many issues the local NAACP is
working on is the jail issue. About half a dozen members of the SWOHGP-CC
attended last night's NAACP meeting to vote on the position the NAACP would
take on the sales tax vote and joined the rest of the membership in voting
in a ratio of about 9-1 (almost 100 for and about a dozen opposed) to oppose
the sales tax to build a new jail. Based on the questions that were asked,
one of the main reasons people were opposing the sales tax is that they
assume the jail would be built but that the rehabilitation and the
prevention measures were not likely to really happen. If Chris Smitherman
were to run for Council he couldn't continue as the spokesperson for the
NAACP this fall on this important election issue.

The national NAACP Convention will be held in Cincinnati July 12-19, 2008
and the National Baptist Convention will be here as well. As the local NAACP
President, Mr. Smitherman will be very busy on this as well. The local Green
Party is working to build stronger ties with the local NAACP because there
are so many issues that we have in common. 

Also, what the Enquirer Article doesn't include is that the local Green
Party will have a candidate in the City Council election - Justin Jeffre. He
ran as an independent for Mayor two years ago but has become more active in
the local Green Party since that time. He will be putting together a
fundraiser over Labor Day weekend and I have agreed to be his PAC treasurer.
More details will be coming out in a separate mailing. 

Tarbell runs for school board
Smitherman decides against race for council

The two biggest surprises of Thursday's filing deadline for candidates for
Cincinnati City Council and the Cincinnati school board were the one
candidate who didn't show up and three who did.

Former City Councilman Chris Smitherman - now president of the NAACP's
Cincinnati branch - said in recent weeks that he would run to regain the
seat he lost two years ago. But he apparently heeded the warnings from
national NAACP leaders and did not file petitions by the 4 p.m. deadline.

Later, he said he did not run because the NAACP is his priority now.

"It was very important for my camp that I stay," Smitherman said.

The national NAACP's chief of field operations, Nelson B. Rivers III, was in
town for the local chapter's meeting Thursday and explained the national
rules prohibiting an NAACP president from running for office. However, he
said he did not come to town specifically for that issue.

The second surprise came in the final half-hour before the 4 p.m. filing
deadline when one soon-to-be-former City Council member and two former
school board members walked into the Hamilton County Board of Elections with
petitions, saying they planned to run for Cincinnati Board of Education
seats as a team.

Jim Tarbell - the Charterite council member who can't run for re-election to
council this year because of the term limits law - has joined forces with
Anne Power, who was president of the school board in the 1980s, and Sally
Warner, a former parent volunteer who served eight years on the board before
deciding not to run for re-election two years ago.

"It came together very quickly," Tarbell said. "We had been talking about it
for several weeks. But we really didn't start going out to get signatures
until Wednesday."

"It's a hell of a team, and I'm hoping we can pick up a few endorsements,"
Tarbell said.

He said the decision to run came earlier this week after the three of them
had talked about what they consider to be the continued deterioration of the
Cincinnati Public School system and their belief that the school levy on
this November's ballot is essential.

Saturday, the Cincinnati Democratic Committee endorsed three candidates for
the three school board seats up for election this year - former Hamilton
County Recorder Eve Bolton, a teacher at Wyoming High School; lawyer Martha
Good, who teaches at Miami University; and Aisha Nurredin, a University of
Cincinnati outreach coordinator and school volunteer.

Bolton had filed her petitions before Thursday; and Good showed up Thursday
afternoon. Nurredin won't be on the ballot because she did not have the
minimum 300 signatures on her petitions.

The surprise appearance of Tarbell, Warner and Power caused some of the
other candidates to be taken aback.

"I don't think I would have done this if I had known these people were
running," Good said.

One school board incumbent, Rick Williams, filed petitions to run for
another term. Two other incumbents on the seven-member board whose seats are
up for election this year are not running: John Gilligan and Florence

The other two candidates who filed petitions for school board seats Thursday
are Michael Flannery, a former stand-up comic and WCPO television reporter;
and Chris Nelms, who runs a baseball program for inner-city kids.

In all, eight candidates filed to run for the three open seats on the school
board; the winners will serve four years. Board members aren't paid a
salary, but they get a $125 stipend for each full board meeting they attend,
according to board member Melanie Bates.

The race to elect nine members of Cincinnati City Council has attracted a
large field of candidates, though not as large as the record number of 31
candidates two years ago.

There are 26 council candidates, including eight incumbents and three former
council members who were once term-limited out of office: former mayor
Roxanne Qualls, who has been appointed to Tarbell's seat; Republican Charlie
Winburn; and Democrat Minette Cooper. Council members earn about $60,000 a

Staff writers Jessica Brown and Denise Smith Amos contributed.

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