Wednesday, June 13, 2012

The Mayoral Battle is Joined

The privateer captained by Alan North has goaded the flagship of Richardson's establishment to enter the fray of battle. The Richardson Coalition PAC fired a broadside against North. The Coalition PAC's weapon of choice was its powerful email list. In a Tuesday email, the Coalition PAC campaigned against North's effort to secure enough signatures on his petition to force a referendum and bring about the direct election of the mayor by amending the Richardson city charter.

After the jump, a damage assessment.

It's unlikely that the Coalition PAC's salvo has slowed North's effort, let alone sunk it.

The appearance of the Coalition PAC in the fight at all is a sign of weakness. The establishment must be worried that the petition will succeed or else there would be no need to call attention to the matter.

The lateness of the Coalition PAC's entry into the fray may be the second mistake by the establishment in this affair. The first was when the city council itself lost control of the process when it voted in February to deep six the proposal to appoint a charter review commission. Now, after the needed signatures on the petition are rumored to have already been collected, it's too late for the Coalition PAC to influence the signature collection process.

That leaves the November election itself as the last line of defense for the establishment. Expect to hear the Coalition PAC make the case to vote "no". There are good and sound reasons for that. There are also good reasons to distrust the shadowy figures behind the petition drive, who seem unwilling to answer questions about themselves or their petition drive. Expect to hear a lot about that from the Coalition PAC, too.

It remains to be seen what kind of election campaign North will mount to get people to vote "yes." He failed to mount any campaign at all in 2011 when he ran for a city council seat. He was such a no-show that some openly wondered if he even existed. So far, his campaign to collect petition signatures has been, not inactive but similarly faceless, even secretive. This is a mistake on North's part, a mistake he had better not repeat in November's general election. Why give your opponent an opening to make the election about yourself and your secretive methods instead of about the issue at hand? North could answer that, but he's not talking.


Sassy Texan said...

It is interesting you jump directly to this being about Mr North. It is not about him. It is about the issue. Nice try, though.

Nathan Morgan said...

Set the people free to decide for themselves who will be their leader! Is that so hard to understand?

Remove the shackles and chains of oppressive government and civic profiteer pirates. Break the cycle of secrecy and disguise.

Signing the petition only puts the question to the people in an election. The only way the public will can be done in this case is to get the question before the people in a proper election.

As evidenced by the attempt to block this effort (and others similar in the past), we can no longer rely on public servants to execute the will of the people.

I find it appalling that there are those who fight so hard to deny a democratic process free from oppressive zealots.