Richmond hasn’t opened a 2010 campaign, but has said she’ll “probably” seek a seventh term. Democratic activist Marcia Andrews is also weighing a run for Richmond’s seat.
A majority of Palm Beach County school board members likes the idea of bringing the $2.7 billion school district under the eye of a proposed county ethics watchdog — but not if county commissioners have the final say on filling the position.
After watching five local elected officials go to prison on federal corruption charges since 2006, county commissioners this summer endorsed the concept of an independent inspector general’s office with subpoena power to monitor public officials and government contracts.
But who would hire and fire and approve the budget of the inspector general remains an open question.
The Wanderer: From Buddy Holly tour and Sgt. Pepper cover to bucking liberals and touting GOP’s WestSunday, September 6th, 2009 by George Bennett
DiMucci — better known simply as Dion from his chart-topping Teenager In Love/Runaround Sue/The Wanderer days — turned 70 this year and is a registered Republican who has developed an admiration for conservative GOP congressional hopeful Allen West. West lost a challenge to U.S. Rep. Ron Klein, D-Boca Raton, last year and is gearing for a 2010 rematch.In a type of gig Dion says he hasn’t done before, he’s scheduled to introduce West at a Boca Raton Republican Club meeting this month and then perform a not-yet-determined number after West speaks.
Dion was part of Buddy Holly’s ill-fated 1959 Winter Dance Party tour (he skipped the doomed plane ride with Holly, Ritchie Valens and J.P. “The Big Bopper” Richardson), and his likeness is included in the iconic crowd shot on the Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band album cover (he’s right behind Tom Mix and Oscar Wilde).To the extent he’s ever been identified with politics in the past, it’s for his 1968 recording of Abraham, Martin and John, which associated him with the folky progressivism of the era.
“I still believe in it,” Dion says of the song. But in other ways, he says, he doesn’t understand the dominant liberalism of the recording industry.“It’s puzzling to me because I’m a rock ’n’ roller and rockers believe in truth and freedom. I don’t believe a lot of them know what the two words mean,” says Dion. “I think a lot of them have confused it (freedom) with license — giving you permission to do anything you want without regard to the consequences.”
Dion describes himself politically as “kind of an independent. … I’m liberal with my love but conservative with my thinking.”
* * *West Boca Community Council President Sheri Scarborough is said by well-placed sources to be considering a run for the school board seat of 21-year incumbent Sandra Richmond. One of the council’s vice presidents, Frank Barbieri, was elected to the school board last year. As attentive readers of the Politics column undoubtedly recall, Democratic activist and former teacher/principal/school administrator Marcia Andrews is also looking at a run for Richmond’s seat. Richmond hasn’t opened a campaign, but has said she’ll “probably” seek reelection next year.
***College student Gary J. Lew is one of three candidates who have filed for the Democratic nomination to succeed term-limited state Rep. Carl Domino, R-Jupiter, in 2010.
But Lew is a registered Republican. He says he signed up with the GOP because of an interest in libertarian-leaning Ron Paul, but avers that “I have never in my life voted Republican.”
He says he’ll switch his registration to Democratic.
Column: Formula to measure Dem zeal for “public option”; potential Richmond challenger; Thomas’ optionsSunday, August 30th, 2009 by George Bennett
Call it the Klein-Craft Axiom: In Palm Beach County and the Treasure Coast, Democratic enthusiasm for a government-run public health insurance plan to compete with private insurers is inversely proportional to the percentage of Republicans in one’s congressional district.Liberal U.S. Reps. Robert Wexler, D-Boca Raton, and Alcee Hastings, D-Miramar, are vocal cheerleaders for the “public option” that is a centerpiece of the health care overhaul pushed by House Democratic leaders.
Wexler and Hastings represent slam-dunk Democratic districts.
But in nearby Palm Beach-Broward District 22, which has slightly more Republican voters than Dems, U.S. Rep. Ron Klein, D-Boca Raton, approached the topic cautiously in a “telephone town hall” with constituents last week.
But he stopped short of embracing it.
“I’m still looking at it. I haven’t committed to it yet,” Klein said of the public option. And as for the entire 10-year, $1 trillion House plan, Klein said he has problems with the price tag and described himself as “not quite there yet on saying I’m supporting the bill.”Striking a similarly cautious tone is Democrat Chris Craft, the St. Lucie County commissioner drafted by national Dems to try to unseat freshman U.S. Rep. Tom Rooney, R-Tequesta, in Republican-leaning congressional District 16.
The public option, says Craft, “is an option that’s on the table. I’m not 100 percent sold on it.”
* * *Marcia Andrews, a former teacher and principal and school district administrator, is considering a run for the school board seat of veteran incumbent Sandra Richmond.
School board seats are nonpartisan. But here’s what makes Andrews’ potential bid interesting: she’s a member of the Palm Beach County Democratic Party’s executive board. And Richmond, elected six times since 1988, is one of the county’s longest-serving Democratic elected officials.Party leaders traditionally discourage challenges of incumbents from within the party. County Democratic Chairman Mark Alan Siegel says he’s not backing Andrews, but hasn’t discouraged her, either, because “I don’t know if Sandi’s running again.”
Richmond says she’ll “probably” seek reelection next year.
* * *Cedrick Thomas, who lost to Mack Bernard in last week’s special state House election, has to give up his Riviera Beach council seat Sept. 22 because he ran for the House.
But he doesn’t rule out seeking reappointment by the council.Thomas is also weighing a 2010 challenge of Bernard or taking on County Commissioner Priscilla Taylor, who was a key Bernard backer.