City Marshal Election in Shreveport
by Marion Marks
MUD or sleazy advertising messages is all that I expect to see in the media and on the streets between now and the end of the day November 4th. I only hope voters see this demonstration of disrespect to voters by handlers of the candidates as a sign that the message results in votes against the mud slingers.
Certainly the MUD has stuck in many past elections, and it does move some voters who have failed to educate themselves of real issues on the election process. If voters have spent time learning about issues and candidates before now, even though the vetting process in some races is suspect, the mud slinging will not be a major influence to them. Unfortunately too many voters have such busy lives, and they vote based on last minute ads and name recognition.
The Shreveport City Marshal race is one that some developments make it easy to determine some facts about the candidates. I have my choices, but one is very clear that I can easily proclaim. My favorite candidate is ABC – Anyone But Caldwell.
Incumbents generally will not draw much opposition, because the incumbent has great strength in the entrenched value of the office they hold. Yet, Charlie Caldwell has created an image for those of us who monitor government offices as the “Worst of the Worst!” He fought public records requests, He used discretionary fund of his office wastefully and with poor judgement. He abused his employees, as was demonstrated by the sealed settlements in favor of those he wrongfully terminated. He showed poor judgement for those whose lives he has made difficult by mistreatment.
Finally, in the recent candidate forum, Caldwell added insult to injury as he indicated he would “do it all over again!”
I can only hope Caldwell finds that his life as an elected official is over at the end of this term and no further public service will in his future. My belief is voters will turn out for any of the other candidates in great numbers. Any votes Caldwell gets in the first primary will be the cap for votes, if he does make the runoff. All other candidate votes will go to whoever makes the runoff against him. It will be an ABC* election.
*Anybody But Caldwell!