This weekend, a friend suggested that I may be too hard on Mike Maunoir/Yenni and that it might be better to put my personal feelings aside and just offer up a blind comparison between the two leading candidates for Parish President.
After my initial shock wore off (I mean who could ever say that I've been too hard on Mike Maunoi/Yenni?), I agreed that his idea had some merit - not that I've been too hard on Maunoir/Yenni but the blind comparison part.
That being said, I will put aside the fact that Mike Maunoir/Yenni lied about me, lied about my family and has attacked my personal friends, but, you're going to need to forget a few things too.
Well, perhaps more than a few things...
So, let's put aside the fact that Mike Maunoir/Yenni changed his name for political gain (I mean, c'mon, if you don't believe that you're an idiot).
Let's put aside the fact that Mike Maunoir/Yenni's entire life has been fabricated and molded by Aaron Broussard and Greg Buisson.
Let's put aside Mike Maunoir/Yenni's relationship with Aaron Broussard, a man who did more damage to Jefferson Parish both physically and emotionally than anyone in Jefferson Parish's history.
Let's put aside the fact that in Mike Maunoir/Yenni's first year as Kenner Mayor, he increased sewerage fees by 145% and tried to double property taxes.
Let's put aside that Mike Maunoi/Yenni tried to close playgrounds in minority neighborhoods as an act of political retribution. And, let's forget Maunoir/Yenni's latest scheme to privatize Kenner playgrounds increasing costs on families with young children and the fact that his Recreation Director tried to sell the naming rights to Playground to benefit the Kenner Spors Foundation. After that was disclosed, not only did the Recreation Director not get fired, Maunoir/Yenni gave him a raise!
Let's put aside the fact that Maunoir/Yenni has created positions for his political friends and moved political appointees into positions that they were unqualified to fill.
Let's put aside the fact that Mike Maunoir/Yenni campaigned against two charter changes that were overwhelmingly approved by Kenner voters because they would limit the power and political clout of the Mayor.
Let's put aside the fact that Mike Maunoir/Yenni used an antiquated 1950's law and semantic word games to take on the largest debt in Kenner's history without a vote of the people and DOUBLED the debt of every man, woman, child and illegal immigrant in Kenner.
Let's put aside the fact that, at his inauguration last year, Mike Maunor/Yenni was already planning his exit and has used the past year+ to campaign and shakedown city contractors for campaign contributions.
Let's put aside the fact that Mike Maunoir/Yenni has diverted hundreds of thousands in Kenner tax dollars to entities affiliated with or controlled by his campaign manager, Greg Buisson.
Let's put aside the fact that, despite claiming that Public Safety is his #1 Priority, the KPD has less street level officers now than before Mike Maunoir/Yenni took office and the morale at the KFD is at an alltime low.
And, let's put aside the rampant allegations and reports that have dogged Mike Maunoir/Yenni regarding his "far less than family values" proclivities.
Now, if you can put all of those issues aside and keep an open mind, and with apologies to the other candidates, let's begin our blind comparison of the two major candidates for Jefferson Parish President. .
Candidate L - BS from McNeese; Masters from Loyola; Advanced Certification from Southeastern.
Candidate M - BS from Southeastern.
Candidate L - Jefferson Parish Councilman-At-Large, elected parish wide and the 2nd highest elected office in the Parish representing 440,000+ residents. Completely serving out his term.
Candidate M - Mayor of Kenner, representing 66,000 residents. Attempting to leave office 1 year into his 2nd term.
PRIOR ELECTED POSITIONS
Candidate L - Jefferson Parish Councilman, District 2 for 8 years, representing approximately 80,000 residents. Jefferson Parish School Board.
Candidate M - None.
Candidate L - Jefferson Parish School Superintendent overseeing a budget of over $500m; College Dean; teacher/coach.
Candidate M - Appointed by Ed Muniz as Kenner CAO overseeing a boduget of $55m; appointed by Aaron Broussard as Jefferson Parish Community Services Driector overseeing a budget of $700k. Never worked in the private sector or held a non-politically appointed job.
Now, based solely on Education and Experience, who would you vote for Jefferson Parish President?