Saturday, February 21, 2009

The Offical Marion County GOP Spin on the Coleman Defection

Just listened to Marion County Republican Communication Director Dan Tierney on Hoosier Access giving the official Republican response to the decision of Ed Coleman to leave the Republican Party to become a Libertarian.

I thought the spin Tierney offered was good. As opposed to the strident comments I heard after the announcement, Tierney took a more conciliatory approach. Perhaps the folks over at headquarters started crunching the numbers and discovered that only one more defection would put the GOP in the minority. Not sure the status of whether Coleman will be stripped of his committee assignments as that question was not asked during the interview.

Josh Gillespie, the host of Hoosier Access, however, asked a good question about the status of Barb Malone, a Republican at-large councilor who had formerly been a Democrat. Tierney handled the question adeptly, smartly praising Malone for her work on the council while ignoring her votes with the Democrats on many issues. He did point out though that she is an attorney and then sort of suggested that because of that, ethics was a priority. I'm sure the attorneys listening got a chuckle out of that.

Tierney did point out that the Republican at-large members ran on the platform of "lower taxes, safe streets and more accountability in government" and that was something that Mayor Ballard supported. He then said he was disappointed that Coleman did not want to continue with that agenda.

Huh? The Mayor's people are over at the legislature lobbying the legislature for higher taxes to bail out the CIB. It was Coleman, and not the Mayor's Office, who dared speak up about the CIB and asked for full disclosure about what is going on. Nobody else on the council, Republican or Democrat, has done that. The Mayor's office has opposed accountability and transparency about what is going on his administration and at the CIB, although during the campaign Ballard promised both. Unlike Mayor Ballard, Coleman apparently took his campaign pledges seriously. Tierney does a really good job with the spin, but, at the end of the day, it's just political spin with only a sprinkling of truth.


anonGOP said...

Had enough?

Sean Shepard said...

I can say from personal knowledge that Councilor Coleman is quite possibly more in favor of lower taxes, transparent government and a safe city than most other elected officials.

While it is very silly to suggest someone wearing a Libertarian label is not in favor of lower taxes and transparency, Dan's comments were, in my opinion, not caustic or petty and he deserves some credit for that.

Paul K. Ogden said...


I would agree with that. I think Tierney did a good job. I always tell people that attorneys are often as only good as the clients they have to represent. As an attorney if I have a terrible client who has a weak case, there is often very little I can do.

I feel sorry for Robert Vane and Dan Tierney. Mayor Ballard's people are screwing up big time and they have to come out and try to put a positive spin on things. That isn't easy.

I think Tierney's comments though reflect that someone got to Republican leadership and told them retaliation was not advisable and that a more conciliatory approach is the way to go. Good for them. They can take my word for the fact there are other Republicans on the council who are very unhappy with the direction of the Ballard administration, so the confrontational route is not the way to go.