Apr 272017
 

Frank Luntz speaks to the Loyola University Institute of Politics on Thursday, April 27. (Robert Morris, UptownMessenger.com)

Why is Frank Luntz so darkly pessimistic about the future of American democracy?

“I’m afraid that this is the election cycle that kills our democracy,” the nationally known pollster and commentator said at Loyola University on Thursday night.

Luntz is so pessimistic because he is paid to listen to people, and what he hears is an America that has become completely unable to listen to one another. Continue reading »

Apr 272017
 
Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus, opinion columnist

The new tax reform plan introduced yesterday by Trump officials was painted with a very broad brush and appears to predominately benefit the wealthy. Though touted to create economic growth, it may in fact create serious implications for working class citizens who could lose their state and local tax deductions. It is especially short on details and how the plan will be paid for. Continue reading »

Apr 202017
 

If you have to appear in Civil District Court, for matters including wills & successions, divorce, custody & support, property rights, accidents, and much more, you want a judge who is knowledgeable of the law, experienced with court proceedings, hardworking, and independent.

SUZY MONTERO has amassed thousands of hours of “real courtroom experience” in her 25 years of practicing law. She is prepared to assume this very important position. Continue reading »

Apr 202017
 

Eric Johnson

Dr. Eric Johnson, a native New Orleanian who started a career in urban development as an aide to City Councilman Jim Singleton and has since worked in major cities around the country, made a formal announcement Thursday of his candidacy for the District B seat on the City Council that will be vacated by LaToya Cantrell’s run for mayor. Continue reading »

Apr 202017
 
Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus, opinion columnist

Yesterday’s announcement by Gambit that Municipal Court Judge Desiree Charbonnet will resign her position on Friday and is likely to enter the race for mayor signals how hot this contest will become. Charbonnet was elected citywide three times and is a charismatic candidate who will attract female and African-American voters, especially those from the Creole neighborhoods. Continue reading »

Apr 132017
 

Timothy David Ray (via timothydavidray.com)

With City Councilwoman LaToya Cantrell now officially in the race for mayor of New Orleans, the contenders for her open District B seat are beginning to line up, with political consultant Timothy David Ray the latest name to join the race. Continue reading »

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Apr 132017
 

Frank Scurlock (photo by Danae Columbus for UptownMessenger.com)

Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus, opinion columnist

Wealthy entrepreneur and world traveler Frank Scurlock, who recently submitted one of the failed bids to redevelop the Six Flags site, is a strong contender the most unconventional candidate to announce for mayor in this cycle. Some even call Scurlock “the Rodney Fertel” of 2017.

Fertel was the husband of the late restaurateur Ruth Fertel who founded the Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse chain. He ran for mayor in 1969 with one campaign promise — to acquire a pair of gorillas for the Audubon Zoo. Fertel became known as the “The Gorilla Man” and was memorialized in the book The Gorilla Man and the Empress of Steakby his son philanthropist Randy Fertel. Continue reading »

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Apr 132017
 

Attorney Marie Williams, a recent candidate for judge, announced her endorsement of her former challenger Attorney Suzy Montero in the race for the open Civil District Court Division B seat to be decided on April 29. Ms. Montero ran first in the three-candidate primary held last month.

Ms. Williams has been a practicing attorney for more than two decades in the New Orleans area. She is a known and respected community activist and has served in appointed judicial positions in criminal court. Ms. Williams said she believes Suzy Montero has the experience necessary to serve on the Civil District Court bench. Continue reading »

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Apr 102017
 

Le Krewe d’Etat lampooned Sidney Torres IV on Napoleon Avenue on Friday, Feb. 24, 2017. (UptownMessenger.com file photo by Robert Morris)

Owen Courrèges

Owen Courrèges

Do you smell that in the air? If it reeks of a festering mound of equine excrement, it’s a safe bet that you’re either ankle deep in the leavings of a police horse, or the mayoral race is ramping up. Continue reading »

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Apr 072017
 

Derrick Edwards and his mother Madeline at the New Orleans Coalition 50th Anniversary earlier this week. (photo by Danae Columbus for UptownMessenger.com)

Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus, opinion columnist

There are few obstacles Derrick Edwards won’t tackle. A former John F. Kennedy High School football star paralyzed from the neck down in a 1989 catastrophic injury, Edwards is undaunted by a crowded field of moneyed Republicans seeking to become Louisiana’s next state treasurer. He is a Democrat and resides on the West Bank of Jefferson Parish. Continue reading »

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Apr 042017
 

No stop sign on St. Andrew at St. Charles Avenue (photo by Owen Courreges for UptownMessenger.com)

Owen Courrèges

Owen Courrèges

Although I am trying to seize the mantle of New Orleans’ resident anti-government curmudgeon, I generally try to avoid playing chicken little. However, it is becoming increasingly evident to me that local government is incapable of providing certain very basic services. If I didn’t know any better, I’d say that the city has simply run out of money.

Earlier this year, I wrote a column in which I pointed out that the city was doing an extremely poor job of replacing street signs. Now, months later, things have become much worse. Continue reading »

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Apr 032017
 

Latoya Cantrell (via her campaign website)

City Councilwoman LaToya Cantrell has formally embarked upon her campaign for mayor of New Orleans, her website now confirms, which will leave her District B seat open. Continue reading »

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Mar 302017
 
Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus, opinion columnist

Although the race to replace now U.S. Senator John Kennedy as State Treasurer is just shaping up, two powerful women – both Republicans – have already emerged as candidates in what will be a big money race: Kenner State Rep. Julie Stokes and former Commissioner of Administration Angele Davis, wife of 19th Judicial District Judge Tim Kelley. Continue reading »

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Mar 272017
 

Paula Brown won election to the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, and a close race for Civil District Court between Suzy Montero and Rachael Johnson will require a runoff in an election Saturday that drew barely 10 percent of registered voters in New Orleans. Continue reading »

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Mar 232017
 

Brian Trascher (submitted photo)

Danae Columbus

Danae Columbus, opinion columnist

Early next week New Orleans based Republican lobbyist Brian Trascher will be escorting CEO Ed Carlson of Odyssey House New Orleans to meet with former Georgia Congressman Tom Price, now Secretary of Health and Human Services under President Donald Trump. “It will be my first meeting with a cabinet member,” said Trascher proudly.

Trascher meet Trump and his attorney in 2011 in New Orleans and offered to help if Trump ever ran for president. When Trascher received the call, he jumped onboard to play an important role in Louisiana and around the country. Trascher says he knew Trump was going to win about a week before the election when he saw the change in direction of highly targeted phone banks he was supervising in other states. Continue reading »

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