Thursday, September 20, 2007

Peterson Stumbles At HobNob Appearance With Ballard

Mayor Bart Peterson appeared anything but confident and reassuring at one of the rare joint appearances he has made this election year with his lesser-known GOP opponent, Greg Ballard. Tonight, Peterson and Ballard had the opportunity to address a gathering of more than five hundred at the Greater Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce's Hobnob With The Candidates at the Indiana State Museum.

Peterson spoke first. He immediately launched into his standard stump speech and appeared dazed and confused when the event moderator, WISH-TV's Jim Shella, interrupted him to tell him he was going to have to answer a few questions. None of the questions were tough and Peterson gave his predictable, canned responses to each of the questions. The most telling moment was when Shella asked Peterson why he was running for a third term. The Mayor's answer was quite weak and offered those present very little reason to give him another four years in office.

Expectations for Ballard were obviously much lower going into tonight's event. For many people present at tonight's event, it was the first time they heard Ballard speak before a large crowd. Ballard won't win any awards for oratory, but he gave a solid performance, exceeding most people's expectations. Shella pressed Ballard on when his campaign intends to air its own ads on radio and TV. Ballard assured the audience they would come in due course. He definitely proved tonight he can hold his own on the same stage with Peterson in the coming weeks when the two face off in debates. Jim Shella conceded to me afterwards that Ballard didn't stumble or make any mistakes, but he thought he needed to come out with something bold. Shella felt he failed to do that.
Many candidates for the City-County Council were on hand tonight, along with many other office-holders and candidates. I spoke to 5th District GOP candidate Dr. John McGoff, who is very upbeat about his campaign to unseat U.S. Rep. Dan Burton (R). Burton seems to be offering voters many reasons not to re-elect him to another term these days. Newly-appointed Councilor Andre Carson was on hand with many of his new-found colleagues at Cripe, one of the sponsors of tonight's event. Carson was being stalked the entire evening by frequent blog commenter Wilson Allen and his camera. It was hard not to miss Allen in his tattered "I ♥ Julia" T-shirt.
By the way, Peterson's favorite color is blue, while Ballard's is red. Just a silly question Shella threw out to each of the candidates tonight.


Scott said...

Is there video?

Wilson46201 said...

and of course sweet Jocelyn Tandy in her usual thuggish way threatened to break my camera if I took her picture...

Aside from that, I had a great time!

garyj said...

I Wish I could have been there. (family comes first) I like watching Bart stumble on his own canned messages. Thats OK. I hope Bart has a great concession speech prepared.
I'm sure that others will posting pics and their views of the event.

Anonymous said...

dream on gary j

not in your wildest, wildest dreams

Bart Lies said...

Wimpy turquoise vs power red tie.

Anonymous said...

Shella should have conducted an exit poll tonight, cause Bart would be singing the blues

Anonymous said...

AI, I see your are drawing more Barrt minions.

Also let me ad, Wilson, you had better never take my picture without my permission and I am not any person you think I am.

Anonymous said...


I had a great time tonight. This was the first evening in quite a while that I was able to change from the Docker/polo shirt door-to-door outfit, and it was a nice, convivial setting for all concerned, Republican, Libertarian and Democrat candidates alike. I got to meet the locally reknowned Mr. Allen, and pronounced him with a clean bill of health regarding possible carpal tunnal, due to his prolific writing.

However, tonight I saw something, right at the end of HobNob, that kind of reinforced a reason as to why I have decided to run for an At-Large seat. I was speaking with fellow candidate Bruce Henry, (R) of District 1, and his lovely and kind wife, Dorothy. As we were talking, I saw with my own eyes none other than our Council President, Monroe Gray, accompanied by the newest member of the Council, Andre Carson (who owes you a steak dinner), walk by the podium where Bruce had his campaign materials set up, to include a large bowl of candy. I saw Mr. Gray stop, look around furtively (for real!) and thinking no one was observing him, tip and empty the bowl into a WIBC 1070 radio sack!

Dorothy Henry, who is one of the nicest people one will meet, intercepted him like a Patriot missile, demanding to know why he stole the candy as opposed to taking a piece or two. Andre Carson, thinking this low thievery was in need of mitigation with humor, grabbed the wall, spread eagling himself as if he was an accomplice. While Dorothy confronted Gray, Bruce tried to laugh it off, raising his hands in surrender. Gray literally took the candy and ran.

Now..some people may think I'm wrapped too tightly, but I assure you, that isnt the case. But if anything ever was symbolic of Monroe Gray stealing from the public while thinking himself above reproach, this was a fine example. Yes, candy is a disposable, consumable item, but then again, if Monroe Gray will brazenly steal in public, what does he do behind closed doors? Fine example for the newest member of your caucus, Mr. Gray.

Lest anyone think I am typing scurrilous, unfounded accusations, I will gladly swear out an affidavit atesting to what I saw. I thought I would give you the info and Abdul first, as I doubt if the letter to the Star's editor I am drafting will ever see daylight.


Michael Hegg
(R) At-large, City County Council candidate

Anonymous said...

Perhaps we can call the episode "CANDY-GATE!" or refer to Gray as 'Candygate for Council Monroe Gray'

Hegg, redux

garyj said...

At least I can support my candidate OPENLY, unlike some anonymous trolls! I can respect Wilson for not hiding behind "anonymous". If you like Bart so much, why hide???

Mike Hegg. That was a great abservation. I would love to see that one on video.

Can you defend that one, Wilson?

Anonymous said...

Mr. Hegg:

Please report this dastardly deed at once to Crime Czar Melina Kennedy. It could be her first chance to work in a criminal courtroom!

While you are at it I am pretty sure I saw Bart Peterson put 3 hot dogs in his coat pocket. Wait, maybe it was Fred Peterson.

Gary R. Welsh said...

Thanks for sharing, Michael. You can't take some kids anywhere. Really, I've put out bowls of candy when I've set up a booth at events before. You would always get one or two young kids try to sneak off with the entire bowl. Never saw an adult try it, let alone the president of our CCC.

Anonymous said...

Mike, thank you for the information. No doubt, Monroe and Andre find this all SO funny! Sad that such 'leaders', and I use 'leaders' VERY loosely, behave in such a manner.


Anonymous said...

garyj-I think you and I met at one point, and I believe you mentioned you live in district 18--I had occasion to speak to your representative--candidate I believe he said his name was Longworth--adam or andy; something like that. Anyways, I was very impressed at how insightful this 23 year-old was. He explained to me why he was running and told me of his platform etc. Where are the candidates like this. I wanted to let you know if he wins, I will more than likely try to relocate to the East side--at least we'll have someone with some common sense in office. My representative is Mr. ethics himself--monroe gray. If I'm ever able to stomach another city council meeting again, and i see you there, I'll be sure to say hello.

Anonymous said...


Thanks for attending the HobNob tonight. Citizen participation such as this is the very purpose of the event.

As you know, even the best planning can go awry once an event is underway- the key is to keep the show rolling. The minor incident you referenced with Shella and the mayoral candidates was a miscommunication on our part. Sorry to disappoint.

Hope to see you at the HobNob next year!

Mark Fisher

Anonymous said...

were we at the same event? i agree peterson (maybe i should call him "perterson" for the ballard supporters) stumbled a bit because he obviously wasn't briefed on the format. ballard, on more than one occasion, looked like a deer in the headlights, like he had no idea what jim was asking. you could see what was going on in his head: "hmmm i hadn't thought about how to FIX the library board problem. i only thought about how to complain about it. maybe if i spout a few words about the library board and taxes again jim will leave me alone. oh, and taxation without representation. it does rhyme and everything."

anyway it was nice to at least see ballard somewhere besides youtube.

Anonymous said...

Gary, you're leaving out the part where Ballard couldn't answer what he was going to do about the library board or when he stumbled over his favorite color...

"um, I think it is red?"

As someone whose pulling for him, he is disappointing me time and again. If he doesn't get much better prior to the debates, Peterson will smack him around and we'll all be stuck with four more years.

Anonymous said...

Bart WILL have MANY MORE REASONS to be nervous in the next few weeks, as more information comes to light. So nice to see that
Mumblin' Monroe has reduced himself to petty thievery. THat may help him in his new business venture "Dumpster Scuba Tours".
Hey! Think of all the free juice!

Gary R. Welsh said...

anon 10:25, I heard Ballard say as he has said before he didn't think the Library Board should have any final say on the issue of taxing; he wanted that decision made by the CCC.

Mark, Shella said the exact opposite to me when I asked him about it. He said there was no misunderstanding with Peterson on the format. I guess the Mayor's folks are now looking for excuses for his underwhelming performance tonight.

Anonymous said...

"Perhaps we can call the episode "CANDY-GATE!" "

I'm thinking "Tootsie Rolls" at the next CCC meeting. Every time he mispronounces a word we toss a Tootsie Roll at him.

Anonymous said...

The Library Board gains its' authority to set a budget and tax rate from STATE STATUTE, not from something that Bart Peterson decided to do...

And for a long time many of those board appointments were made by Republicans and included the previous county treasurer (Greg Jordan) and county clerk (Sarah Taylor) (who were appointed by the "County Commissioners" (treasurer, auditor, recorder). So, to lay the Library Board at the feet of the Mayor of the CCC (who was just granted oversight of the Board's budget in 2005) shows a clear lack of understanding of how the Board, and county government for that matter, operate.

Anonymous said...

I beleieve it is time to take this message to the Street and Reporters.
In Marion County we have Crony Capitalism.... A one Party system
The Perterson Admin. is treating the Top business Republicans so well that The Republican recipients of favortism do not want to support Ballard to the extent necessary to force Bart Out.

Life is not so good here in Moscow Indiana.
And if you own a home, it is worse.

This from a leading journalist.
What a way to be sure the voters have no choice... Or do we??
Stay in the Streets and Pray for Peace..... And power in the vote.
Vote them all out now and stick with it !

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

I am a Democrat who plans on voting for only 3 of the 4 democrat at large candidates. I cannot vote for Ron Gibson. He needs to be in rehab. I thought I would vote for Hegg instead but after his mean spirited post on this site perhaps I will vote for Kent Smith....but not Hegg

Anonymous said...

4:10, how exactly was Heggs post mean spirited? Do you not think that yet another of Monroe Grays indiscretions, if not downright theft, should be reported?

Anonymous said...

Oh come on, "mean spirited"?? if nothing else, it was a narrative delivered in the same fashion as found on TDW, with a sense of humor about a bad, controversial situation. Monroe makes us all look bad :(

Anonymous said...

I do hope folks will get to know Timothy J. Maguire who is running for council at large.

He's a financial planner and plans to work the same advice he gives his clients on his job at city council.

He's quite approachable and accessible too. If you want to get to know him and his views, just contact him.

His commericials are running on WXNT often.