Sunday, November 9, 2008

Mayor Coody's Dishonest Campaign

Old-fashioned attacks and fear-mongering have entered the campaign for Fayetteville mayor. The Northwest Arkansas Times has an article today about two former mayoral candidates and a state legislator endorsing Alderman Lioneld Jordan for Mayor in the November 25 run off election. They give more column inches to incumbent Mayor Dan Coody fabricating fears than to the endorsements.

Here's the section on Coody's attacks:

“I know Lioneld would make a radical change in direction that I don’t think would be positive for the city,” he said. Coody said he thinks the city’s fire and police departments will likely become unionized if Jordan is elected. The city of Fayetteville must maintain control of its own taxes, revenue and budget, he said.

“If police and fire unionize, they’ll have the ability to do collective bargaining,” he said. “It would eventually have to extend to all 730 city employees. We don’t want to take the lead of so many other cities that are declaring bankruptcy to meet union demands.”

Jordan refuted the mayor’s claims, saying he has no intention of unionizing the city.

“I’ve been on City Council for eight years. I’ve never brought any labor legislation forward, and I don’t intend to,” he said. “I’m not running for mayor to unionize the city; I’m running for mayor to properly manage the city, which is what it needs right now.”

Earlier Alderman Jordan told the Fayetteville Flyer blog, "It is unfortunate that campaigns are sometimes mired by unfounded rumors and negative attacks. Even good people say foolish things when they become desperate in political campaigns, and that is not limited to some of the wild charges being made in the presidential campaign....

"After I was endorsed by the Fayetteville Firefighters Association and the Fayetteville Fraternal Order of Police, one of the candidates started saying that I had made some secret promises and was plotting a union takeover of city government. That is ridiculous. I am proud to have been a member and officer of my union at the University of Arkansas for more than a decade. During my eight years on the City Council, I have always been an advocate for the interests of working families, and I will continue to be when I am mayor. You can count on it. But never have I made any attempt as an Alderman to unionize city employees, because I do not think it is appropriate for elected public officials either to encourage or discourage public employees from exercising their constitutional rights to join a union if they choose. Our dedicated city employees deserve fair treatment and fair pay, and I will always listen to the ideas, concerns, and suggestions of all employees and deal with them in good faith."

1 comment:

stephen smith said...

If Mayor Coody is not lying, then he displays a gross ignorance of city government. Even if the city employees were organized, any collective bargaining agreement would be one negotiated with the mayor and approved by the city council. His comments about many cities declaring bankruptcy to meet union demands is pure fiction. He should be ashamed.