Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Local partisan blogger walks back insinuations about two very different CMs

He's been attacking Karl Dean's critics for so long that yesterday's salvo against CM Jamie Hollin should have come as no surprise to anyone, but partisan blogger and aspiring candidate for big cheese of Tennessee Young Democrats, Sean Braisted clearly overreached in his latest digs.

Those of us who actually paid attention to the Metro Council meeting debate on Hollin's co-sponsored non-discrimination ordinance (and make no mistake that he was one of the primary architects of the bill motivated by the sad episode at Belmont) recall that Michael Craddock made no effort to argue against the bill. Now, I've been as critical of the Madison CM since 2005 as any other local blogger; but Craddock not rising to speak on a polarizing and controversial bill is about as regular as an Alberta Clipper through Ashland City in August. So, you long-time council watchers will note that Craddock's silence on nondiscrimination when given a golden opportunity is remarkable.

But the facts didn't stop Braisted:

Hollin [is] working to help Michael Craddock become Nashville's next mayor.  Now, its no secret that there isn't much love between Hollin and Dean, but while the mayor might've been a bit slow walking up to the plate on the Contractor NDO, Craddock was actively working to oppose this, and other measures intended to give gay men and women a certain level of protection in their jobs.

Everything about Craddock indicates a deeply homophobic man.  Why Hollin, who clearly has a disdain for this element of our political society, would actively work to help make the man mayor, is beyond me.

Glory be. Hollin is working to help Craddock beat Dean. In other news, politics makes strange bedfellows. Take Craddock's fellow conservative Charlie Tygard, who also voted against Hollin's ordinance: Tygard is widely acknowledged to be one of Karl Dean's staunchest supporters even going so far as to say so in a recent Tennessean story. But he opposes nondiscrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. And yet, none of Braisted's blog trolls are going after Tygard or Dean.

Moreover, Braisted played the good soldier and soft-pedaled Dean's actual slow walk to nondiscrimination. The Mayor's original stand was to oppose based on the misguided notion that "less regulation is good." Dean's come-to-Jesus moment on Hollin's NDO afterwards was patently arbitrary: Mike Curb told him he supported it. So, if Mike Curb told him he was ambivalent on it or opposed it, the Mayor would have fought Hollin, and thus, sided with council conservatives like Tygard and Craddock (who voted against Hollin on NDO).

So after blogging, Braisted vouchsafed an audience with Hollin whereupon learning that his information was wrong. Instead of writing the standard "Correction," Braisted wrote an update indicating to me that it was Hollin, not the blogger correcting misinformation. Note the mealymouthed wording:

*Updated: After a lengthy and informative conversation with Councilman Hollin, he rightfully corrected this statement about Craddock actively working to oppose the contractor NDO. In fairness, he didn't speak out on the matter as some of the other conservative council-members did. He has, however, actively opposed other pro-gay rights measures on the council.

As did Karl Dean's "deeply homophobic" man, Charlie Tygard. But Dean gets a pass from Braisted.

A couple of years ago I couldn't convince Braisted about the importance for neighborhoods of council meetings and of zoning and planning meetings. Nowadays he's in with both feet, never having met a developer's tear-down plan or a Mayor's growth scheme he didn't like. My guess is that his newfound interest correlates to his party aspirations and helping his Dem friends out where he can. I'm sure the Mayor's Office honchos appreciate his willingness to play whack-a-mole on their critics because they've made it clear that the Mayor won't be taking this kind of low road.

I just wonder if we are going to see Braisted ask Re-elect Dean to pay him as a campaign consultant in the same way CM Jerry Maynard did. He is certainly putting in the hours at his blog.


  1. I'm not critical of Craddock because of who his supporters are, I'm critical of Craddock because of Craddock. I'm obviously not supporting Tygard for re-election, and hope he loses in 2011 to a more progressive candidate.

    I am willing to take criticism (unlike some bloggers), and when its valid, I correct the record. Craddock by all appearances is a deeply homophobic man, and he has actively worked against the 2009 NDO. He didn't, however speak out on this one...bully for him. I got a small detail wrong but the overall premise of the post stands as accurate.

  2. Sean,
    Sounds to me like you could have called out the Mayor and many council members concerning this issue. Why only Craddock?
    As you said, Craddock did not speak out against this initiative while many others did. Why then have you taken aim at Craddock concerning this issue?

    It would appear you have missed the focus of the issue at hand and attempted to paint a picture deserving oil and canvass with one color from your Crayola set.

  3. That Facebook thing is hilarious. I was out the next day after the flood, with four others, helping clean up a business that had been damaged by flood waters.

    Dean didn't get me or the others out to help. Like thousands of other Nashvillians, we woke up, took a look around and got to work.

    It's laughable that Dean takes credit for this.