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McConnell maneuver fails in City Council

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In a move at least one opponent compared to U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s refusal to hold hearings on President Obama’s nominee to the Supreme Court, two aldermen Monday demanded that the City Council let the new mayor fill vacancies on the city’s Board of Ethics.

Alderman Judy Fiske, 1st Ward, argued that because Mayor Elizabeth Tisdahl is one of the people named in complaints pending before the board she shouldn’t get to select board members who would act on the complaints, and that selection of new board members should be left to incoming mayor Steve Hagerty, who will take office May 8

But Madelyn Ducre, one of the residents who filed the pending complaints, told aldermen earlier in the meeting that she was looking forward to having the complaints addressed at a scheduled meeting April 18.

Tisdahl said that without, at minimum, the reappointment she proposed of  Keida Harris-Harty to the board, the five member panel would have only two members and would be unable to achieve a quorum to hear the complaints at the April 18 meeting.

Alderman Delores Holmes, 5th Ward, compared the situation to last year’s refusal by Senate Republicans to consider President Obama’s Supreme Court nominatee and said “the mayor is the mayor until May 8.”

The complaints by Ducre and Betty Ester argue that Tisdahl and Holmes, as well as aldermen Peter Braithwaite, 2nd Ward, and Eleanor Revelle, 7th Ward, violated the code of ethics by endorsing Robin Rue in the race to replace Holmes as 5th Ward alderman.

Alderman Don Wilson, 4th Ward, said whoever the mayor is would have to make appointments to the ethics board, and that Hagerty had been endorsed by many people as well.

The aldermen voted to approve Harris-Hartry’s reappointment 6-2 with Fiske and Alderman Brian Miller, 9th Ward, voting no.

New ethics board members Karena Bierman and Vincent Thomas Jr.

They also approved new appointments for Karena Bierman and Vincent Thomas.

Fiske and Miller voted against both of them and Alderman Ann Rainey, 8th Ward, joined the no vote against Thomas.

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