|Public Safety Director Frank Straub|
The irony is that Straub is a liberal Democrat from New York. Many local Republicans say - half jokingly - that the Democrats planted Straub in the Ballard administration to o bring down the Mayor.
A Mayor with strong leadership qualities would have canned Straub long ago. Ballard didn't do that. Tonight he paid the price when the Fraternal Order of Police, which enthusiastically supported Ballard in 2007, turned sharply against him. WTHR reports:
Indianapolis - The city's police union endorsed Democrat Melinda Kennedy Thursday night in her challenge against Republican Mayor Greg Ballard.The significance of this vote cannot be overlooked. Police officers are a major local voting block in local politics. We're not only talking police officers, but their friends and family. Plus, members of the FOP tend to be conservative in their politics. The FOP not only endorsed Ballard in 2007, but also endorsed Republican mayoral candidates Greg Jordan in 2003 and Sue Anne Gilroy in 1999. I'm not sure the last Democratic mayoral candidate the FOP endorsed. It's been at least since the time of the Goldsmith administrations, possibly even before that.
One-hundred-twenty-five FOP members voted for Kennedy while 36 voted for Mayor Ballard after hearing from both candidates.
Earlier this year police union members said they were frustrated with Mayor Ballard's Public Safety Director Frank Straub.