While Lisa Borders signs the papers that will officially put her in the race for mayor this morning, Kasim Reed will be speaking to 80 or so African-American pastors at Paschal’s.
This will be followed sometime today, by a news conference called by Clark Atlanta University political scientists William Boone and Keith Jennings, authors of the “black mayor” memo.
Which means we’re in for another day of discussion about race and the Atlanta mayoral contest.
The topic isn’t something that Mary Norwood, the white councilwoman targeted by that memo, thinks enriches her day. The acknowledged frontrunner sought to change the subject this morning by pointing to an audit that showed the city’s water services in disarray.
Here’s the ajc.com summary:
First, Atlanta mishandled last year’s water rate increase. Then it screwed up sending out bills.
After that, water and sewer officials improperly cut service for some Atlanta residents.
And now, Atlanta’s Watershed Management Department denies doing anything wrong….
“The facts are pretty straightforward,” said Leslie Ward, the city’s auditor. “The real story has been in the aftermath. I don’t think I’ve ever done an audit with indisputable evidence and the staff completely agreed with what happened, only to have the head of the department completely deny it. This is a new experience for me.”
Says Norwood: “Once again, we see the value of the audits that I have demanded for years.” She’s posted the complete 51-page report on her web site.
There’s no question which New York Times article today dominates the attention of Secretary of State Karen Handel — who recently asked the U.S. Justice Department to reconsider a veto of her voter-screening project:
Seven months after taking office, Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. is reshaping the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division by pushing it back into some of the most important areas of American political life, including voting rights, housing, employment, bank lending practices and redistricting after the 2010 census.
As part of this shift, the Obama administration is planning a major revival of high-impact civil rights enforcement against policies, in areas ranging from housing to hiring, where statistics show that minorities fare disproportionately poorly. President George W. Bush’s appointees had discouraged such tactics, preferring to focus on individual cases in which there is evidence of intentional discrimination.
While you ponder that, consider these items found while perusing this morning’s ajc.com:
Gwinnett whiffs on stadium-naming deal. Authors of Atlanta ‘black mayor’ come forward. Jim Maddox to call it quits on Atlanta council. Atlanta schools soft on cheats? Metro Atlanta gets $9 million to help families pay rent. At Cobb forum, Gingrey’s attack on health care bill delights most attendees. East Point delays 2010 budget vote after citizen input.
Your Luckovich fix. Conservatives hit the wrong health care reform target. Reform would gut home health care.
From elsewhere in Georgia:
Politico: White House fears liberal war pressure. WP: Virginia governor’s race erupts over McDonnell’s past views. WSJ: Health care anger has deeper roots.
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