Friday, December 11, 2009

Caveat emptor: council member warns Metro buyers to beware of lobbyists bearing artificial public opinion

According to this morning's City Paper, Mike Jameson e-mailed fellow council members warning them of the push-PR tactics of the mercenaries of Dave Cooley, a former McNeely, Pigott, & Fox principle who as a Bredesen staffer was no stranger to receiving special government treatment:
the East Nashville representative points to attempts at influencing public support for the project, carried out by Cooley Public Strategies — a public relations firmed hired by the Music City Center Coalition, a group lobbying on behalf of the convention center.

“Regardless of our individual perspectives upon the proposed convention center, we have a collective interest in an honest assessment of public opinion,” Jameson wrote. “Tactics which seek to manipulate polling data or to create artificial appearances of public support have no place in this discussion.”

What apparently pushed Jameson over the top was a mass e-mail sent Thursday morning from Mark Brown of Cooley Public Strategies to folks believed to be supporters of the Music City Center, which encourages them to vote in a WSMV-TV poll.

“WMSV has an online poll on the Music City Center,” Brown alerted his e-mail list. “Could you take a second and vote in favor and then get a few other people to do the same?”

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