This year, despite numerous worthy nominations, the Ringside Politics listeners selected, by an overwhelming margin, New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu. Ironically, Landrieu is currently being celebrated by national Democrats for “courageously” removing four of the city’s Confederate monuments; however, in reality, he created racial divisions and opened old wounds that had long ago been healed.
Landrieu vowed to find appropriate places for the monuments to be displayed, but, today, they are being stored in a dingy city warehouse. Despite his promises of repurposing the former monument locations, the old sites remain eyesores today. Landrieu has literally destroyed beautiful city attractions in his quest for national glory and praise from the liberal media and Democratic Party leaders.
This year, our radio listeners nominated several dozen individuals and groups, all with outstanding credentials to become our Ringside Politics Turkey of the Year. Nevertheless, the clear winner with the most votes and the best choice for our 2018 award is House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI).
Early this morning, a person was killed on Iberville Street, right next to Bourbon Street, in the heart of the French Quarter. This area is the lifeblood of New Orleans tourism, the city’s most important industry.
It is no surprise to learn that the Mayor may run for President in 2020 and will be writing a book about how he dealt with the monument issue. The book will be a shameless attempt to garner national headlines while he prepares for a presidential campaign.
If he was honest, he would admit that the controversy was a two-year distraction from more pressing issues, such as the violent crime rate. New Orleans is a top destination for murderers, ranking as one of the most violent cities, per capita, in the nation. Landrieu decimated the police force when he became Mayor and the New Orleans Police Department never recovered.
His management of the Sewerage and Water Board was abysmal and his pick for Executive Director was exposed as a political hack who had no business running such an important agency. Incredibly, experienced engineers, hydrologists and water system experts were overlooked so Cedric Grant, a Landrieu crony, could be selected for the Sewerage and Water Board position.
When a minor rainstorm flooded New Orleans on August 5, 2017, the Mayor stayed in Aspen, Colorado to attend parties and seminars and refused to immediately return to his rain-soaked city. For two days, while his citizens were dealing with a myriad of problems created by his incompetent mismanagement, Landrieu partied with colleagues at the Aspen Institute. While he was away hobnobbing with the political elite, Landrieu allowed his staff to lie to the local media and residents about what really happened. They lied about the cause of the disaster and even tried blaming global warming.
Eventually, Landrieu returned to New Orleans and did what most politicians do, blamed his underlings, firing subordinates and denying personal responsibility. He tried to convey the image of a leader in charge, but that fantasy had long ago been exposed as total fiction.
It was discovered that major funds were either lost or stolen, drainage pumps did not work, equipment was inoperable or antiquated and catch basins were not cleaned on a regular basis.
Landrieu did not fulfill even the most basic requirements of a Mayor. He did not provide a safe environment for residents and tourists alike.
Over the next six months, it will be difficult for New Orleans residents to tolerate Mitch Landrieu presiding over tricentennial festivities in the city. A historic celebration will be led by a Mayor who declared war on history to advance his selfish political aspirations.
New Orleans has survived plenty of disasters in its 300-year history and will survive Mitch Landrieu. Unfortunately, he has done tremendous damage to one of the most unique and colorful cities in the world. Hopefully, he will not win the Democratic nomination, much less the presidency, for the consequences for our nation could be catastrophic. If he does for the nation, what he did for New Orleans, God help us all.