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Thursday, March 20, 2008

Murderer or Martin Sweeney lackey? This, alas, is your choice for city council

Posted By on Thu, Mar 20, 2008 at 5:09 AM

The voters in Cleveland’s Ward 6 narrowed their choices for a new City Council member down to two on Tuesday, and boy are the options tempting. Underdog John Boyd is a convicted murderer, and front-runner Mamie Mitchell is supported by Council President Martin Sweeney, Cleveland's leading sexual harasser. Let’s think about this for a minute. Ward 6 is a neighborhood that could really use a good rep. It includes the posh Cleveland Clinic and Little Italy, as well as some of the most desolate areas in the city, like Fairfax and Buckeye-Woodland. Residents are desperate for jobs, little old ladies complain they’re being pushed out of their homes by the Clinic’s expansion, and no one’s particularly happy about the new juvvie center being built on a contaminated site... For the past 12 years, the area has been represented by Pat Britt, who greatest achievement was building a reputation for not returning constituent's phone calls. Mitchell is Britt’s hand-picked successor, which should tell you something. She’s also known to support Sweeney, who has come under fire both for the $87,000 the city had to pay to get rid of a sexual harassment claim against him, and for his undying devotion to Mayor Frank Jackson. Who needs a council president who serves only as a rubber stamp for the worst mayor... since the last mayor? Several members of council want Sweeney ousted, but they don’t have enough votes to do it. Mitchell’s election would only hurt their cause. But the election of a convicted murderer, now that would be a truly Cleveland accomplishment. –Lisa Rab
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