Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Carty & Kest Gang Weaken Party

In their ham-handed attempt to deny the Democratic endorsement to Mayor Ford, Carty and the Kest Gang have abandoned a critical element of party leadership: candidate recruitment. In the process they've substantially weakened the present and future prospects of the Lucas County Democratic Party. Not that any of this matters to those end-of-the-line Carty and Kest Gang leaders...their sole enterprise, sadly, is the Finkbeiner coda.

16 people have successfully completed petitions for At-Large City Council. Of them, 11 are white men, 2 are white women, and just one black man, black woman and Latino each. If not for the recruitment by LucasCountyDemocrats.org, there would be no diversity to the council slate: Phil Copeland, Karen McConnell-Hancock, Karen Shanahan, and Bob Vasquez - I am proud to run with an accomplished, balanced slate - small business women, children's counselor, labor leader, younger and older, male and female, some with political experience, some without. Differences of opinion on things, and all with imperfections, but Democrats who were recruited to work together to win an election and move Toledo in a positive direction.

Last summer Carty & the Kest Gang rigged the rules of the LCDP to withhold endorsements until the September municipal primary. Absolutely transparent bidding for Finkbeiner at Mayor Ford's expense - and party leaders didnt have the decency to be honest about it. They added insult to injury by turning around and interpreting their own rules to go ahead and confer endorsements on candidates who were their "friends", those seen as at least neutral in the Mayor's race, if not suck-ups to Carty and the Kest Gang.

Now, many have written "Frank, Kest is gone, give it up!" But wait! On Finkbeiner's own website is listed "John Irish - Grassroots Coordinator" Joined by Dennis Duffey and Bill Lichtenwald, whose proud images also emblazen the Finkbeiner website, I think you'd have to concede: The Kest Gang rides again! Even better scoop: The rumor in One Govt Center is that Domenic Montalto, another longtime Kest deputy, is set to join the staff of the Board of Elections by September. The man has always seemingly been nice to me, but then is part-and-parcel of kicking me out of the Democratic Party.

If these guys had been successful in 2001, the City of Toledo and NW Ohio would have suffered the indignity of having to remove Toledo's Mayor from office (remember Kest brokered a deal with a special prosecutor and was forced from public office) What kind of effect would that have had on potential investment and job attraction to our city? Ahh, but some people just don't learn, and have snuck around like kids in a race for high school class president attempting to secure another term for Carty Finkbeiner - whose honesty, it now appears, has been slack since he was a young man and returned the "Young Man" award for fudging accomplishments....all the way to 2005 and plaigerising in yet another tired, rah-rah kick-off speech.

Back to the issue: Carty and the Kesties are about saving their jobs and moving onto the 22nd floor. No care for the 2006 or future prospects of the Democratic Party. No care for the damage they inflict on loyal, traditional Democratic constituencies.

Here is the line-up for At-Large Council, when certified by BoE:
(Vote for up to six)

Lucas County Democrats.org
Frank Szollosi, Karen McConnell-Hancock (re-election)
Phil Copeland (retain)
Bob Vasquez, Karen Shanahan (elect)

Endorsed Republicans
George Sarantou (re-elect)
Dave Schulz (elect)
Joe Birmingham (elect - to Council District 6 in November) after Wade K takes Treasurer's Office after sick, shameful Carty & Kest Gang "banana republic-style" backroom deals, with Com. Thurber's help, that installs TWO unelected Kest Gang interlopers (Bob Reinbolt, Dennis Duffey) ahead of endorsed Democrat and rightly elected Treasurer-elect.

Betty Shultz (re-elect)

Endorsed Democrat "pay no attention to the rules, boys, he's a Teamster"
Mark Sobczak (elect)

Bob McCloskey (elect - current District Councilman)
Jason Schreiner (elect - current Whitmer Gov't teacher)
Tom Meinecke (elect)
Terry Shankland (elect)

Green Party
Mitch Balonek (elect)

Ernest Berry
Robert Tilton


Blogger Lisa Renee said...

Thanks for the list Frank, I was waiting for the BOE to fax me a copy after Friday's certification meeting.

I'd suggest that both sides are responsible for the split into the whole A team and B team scenario. Both sides have to be willing to work together rather than against. Luckily for both groups of the Democratic Party this area is strongly supportive of Democrats in general else I think it could have been a larger problem as far as Republicans gaining control.

I'm not a political insider, so all I can do is call them as I see them. I'm sure there are things many of us don't know that add to your conviction on being anti-Carty. To me, I would expect some of the previous people involved in supporting Carty or Ray Kest to also be involved in his campaign. Just as I expect the Toledo Blade will continue to be more pro Mayor Ford and less supportive of Carty.

I also understand this is the nature of the political beast, the battle of the primaries then trying to put as many differences aside as possible to work towards a common goal.

I wish you well and if my endorsement means anything? You in my opinion should be re-elected.

10:11 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think there's no doubt that the new mayor will be a democrat - in this town that's pretty much a slam dunk.

Unfortunately Frank - not from just some, but from EVERYONE I talk with at work, Im thinking you done hitched your wagon to the wrong horse.

7:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Hitched your wagon to the wrong horse?" Frank is the horse. If Mayor Ford gets another term - which he surely deserves - or not, the future of this county's democratic party is in the able, hard working hands of Frank Szollosi!
Sorry for the shameless obsequiousness Frank. But it is true. Do your friends at work really think that Carty is the future of this party? Please no.

12:17 AM  
Blogger Frank said...

Insert your own horse's a## joke here.

Seriously though, as people from both the so-called A and B teams would agree, my heart has always been in finding Democratic unity, working together to defeat Republicans, and focusing on what different local Democratic factions have in common. It has been a mission of mine since I returned to Toledo in 1997 - and somewhat of a legacy of the Mayor's race in 1997, not that Finkbeiner ever looked at it that way.

I won't even claim idealism here - despite how it sounds. I'm simply sick and tired of Democrats at the state and national level getting their butt's kicked - that Democrats in NW Ohio have a special obligation to set aside personal, local differences to work together to elect state and national candidates. We don't live in deeply "blue" or "red" state - we have to work together and with intensity to win elections, we have a much higher obligation than Democrats around the country. Look, Democratic Governors, Presidents and Legislatures will be big, big boosts for our city's fortunes! Shame on Carty for putting himself above that. Everyone says he cares about Toledo.....blah, blah, blah - its a joke! If he truly cared, he wouldnt have further split the party on the eve of the 2006 elections. He would have acted like a statesman, like I publicly asked him to earlier this year, and he replied "No way." Then get lost, Finkbeiner, Toledo and NW Ohio needs Democrats to be successful and unified, not a carcass used for your retirement plans.

8:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

WHAT ABOUT WILKOWSKI!!! He is the big trator in all this. Chair of democrats.org and then he abandons us when an opportunity comes up. I know you're blasting Wilkowski in private, why don't you do it in public???

1:10 PM  
Blogger Frank said...

My feeling is that Wilkowski got in on account of an intense, understandable, "stop Finkbeiner" impulse. I wish he had invested in Mayor Ford though - as Mayor Ford can beat Carty.

As far as "blasting Keith in private", I only say that I'm not supporting him, but rather Mayor Ford. Keith is a fine man, and at least has been honest about his intentions, unlike Carty and the Kest Gang. Keith's critique of the Ford Administration freights Mayor Ford with the failures of Ohio and U.S. Republican failure on the economy, health care, poverty and housing goals. Mayor Ford is a champion on these issues.

1:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I will start out with acknowleging that I am a Republican - a hard role to play in this city. A couple of observations that I would be interested in some clarity from Frank on;

(1)I meet with a fairly wide range of commercial realtors. These are essentially the men and women that are the "grassroots" economic developers. A common complaint among most of them is when they attempt to bring companies (ranging in all sizes) to the administration they are immediately backsold (the city contacts those companies directly trying to cut out the middle man). Not one of those deals have gone through and over a 3 year period we are talking over 20 companies.

(2)Not being entirely familiar with the O.I. departure situation, it came to light that the administration missed a critical deadline. However, when it came to the Jackson-Ball Steamplant deal Mr Carroll claimed that J-B was the only one that met the deadline. Isn't this hypocritical?

Please start with these two. I don't want to overwhelm you with too many questions. As an "R", I'm relatively indifferent about the different "D" candidates and "teams" of the local party. I would just like to learn the truth without media spin. - Thank you

10:27 PM  
Blogger Frank said...

Thanks for the questions. I certainly welcome questions & comments from R's, by the way.

Give me a day to reply on the specifics of your economic development concerns.

10:51 PM  
Blogger Lisa Renee said...

I think Mr. Wilkowski will hurt Mayor Ford in this election. Given the range of emotion on Carty, it seems either you love him or you hate him, people that are unhappy with Mr. Ford yet do not want Carty are going to vote for Wilkowski, which could cost Jack Ford the primary.

My two cents worth on it. Without the horse jokes..


11:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If Jack sincerely wants re-election, it would be in Jack's best interest to out Carty and remind Toledo why Carty is a "F-up".

Four years and the memories of Toledoans become foggy. Well, considering Karyn's fubar, Toledo forgets after three weeks.

4:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Who cares? This is more of the partisan political stuff that we all hate Frank. Talk about your record and your plan for Toledo's future.

5:41 PM  
Blogger Frank said...

I'm mixing my plans and record with some political commentary on the blog - I appreciate what you think is important and what isn't - cut me some slack, man.

10:11 PM  
Blogger Lisa Renee said...

Not all of us hate the politics stuff, infact some of us really like that "stuff"


1:46 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Still waiting on the response to the questions posed to Frank....

10:26 AM  
Blogger Frank said...

Yes, sorry for the delay.

I'll respond to your second question first:

The Ford Administration didn't miss any deadline regarding OI's decision, best I can tell. Its my understanding that Mayor Ford and other elected officials had repeated spoken to and reached out to Mr. McCracken and others at OI - over a period of two or three years.

Though OI made their business decision, Mayor Ford can point to other major downtown tenants who have stayed on his watch, and with his encouragement: LOF, Owens Corning, SSOE, Hylant, Pilkington.

The Ball-Jackson proposal for the Steamplant was outstanding - and I'm glad to see earth moving at the construction site.

Second, the allegation that the Ford Administration has "backsold" area developers. I'm scheduled to meet with a key city economic development official shortly, and plan on exploring this notion in detail. I know disgruntled developers, and I know some optimistic, reasonable developers. There have been a nnumber of successful small business starts and expansions here the past 3 years, as well as some major auto related investment. Mayor Ford and I are working with some developers as we speak on major, major, retail and commercial investment into Toledo.

Let me talk to the ED contact about the backsold story. I appreciate your patience and interest.

11:38 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please keep us informed. There are too many 'ifs' in all this stuff.

6:24 PM  

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