Five days after sweeping through Election Day, the 16 Republicans who will make up the City-County Council majority gathered on the 48th floor of the Chase Tower to select a leadership team.
It was just after 5 p.m. when the Republicans gathered in the offices of Obsidian Enterprises, owned by top GOP contributor Tim Durham. As the group arrived, the sun was shining into the conference room; cookies decorated with GOP elephants sat on the oval table that the members sat around.
Tully's lack of concern about the meeting's location is particularly noteworthy given he devoted an entire column to Durham's rather public sex life a few months back. Here was a little of what Tully wrote about Durham then:
Durham hosted a more interesting "Fantasy Pajama and Lingerie Party" at his home featuring 2005 Penthouse Pet Martina Warren. The festivities are documented on Durham's R-rated MySpace page . . .
Although he gives most of his campaign cash to Republicans, Durham also has financially supported some Democrats, including Mayor Bart Peterson.
But these days, political insiders are talking about Durham's MySpace page, which highlights the pajama party. One photo shows two naked brunettes making out. Another shows three blondes groping. The site also includes photos of the 45-year-old Durham -- who is divorced -- with D-level celebrities and Playboy Playmates . . .
If the photos were on Durham's fireplace mantel, who would care? Since he put them on MySpace for the world to see, insiders are talking.
"I'm a private citizen," said Durham, who is a member of the governor's re-election Steering Committee. "I am who I am. If someone doesn't want money from me, they don't have to call and ask me for it.
"Durham, who lives in Fortville, said he hired 10 off-duty police officers, mostly from Fishers, to make sure no laws were broken at the party.
"I had a party," he said, "and some of the attendees got a little out of control.
"Then he posted photos of the action on MySpace. After I called, Durham limited access to his site to his friends.
It is beyond belief that the GOP council members would find no problem holding a meeting to choose the leadership of the new GOP council at any private businessman's office, let alone Tim Durham's in light of recent publicity surrounding him. Can you imagine what the GOP would be saying if the Democrats convened at 300 East or a local labor union hall to pick their leadership team? Did Durham make a hefty recent contribution to the local party which made it all the more enticing to conduct this official meeting in his private office space?
The message the GOP council sends is loud and clear. People who contribute big bucks to our political campaigns are more important than you common folks. It's business as usual. If you want to play, you have to pay. The rest of us are irrelevant. And you thought we voted for change last week.