PRESS ENDORSEMENT: CDA needs more than 'angry' in a mayor
Joe Alfieri’s campaign for Coeur d’Alene mayor could probably be summed up in one sign.
It’s impossible to miss, posted appropriately on a dumpster trailer on the east side of Government Way. After telling you to vote for Joe, the sign unleashes this slogan:
“Because it’s time to take out the trash!”
That ad, paid for by Alfieri’s campaign, wasn’t just a horrible slap in the public's face that slipped past Alfieri's political advisers. It sums him up Alfieri's approach perfectly.
The man obviously sees those with whom he disagrees as trash. In other words, deplorables. Does that ring a bell?
For further evidence, consider a Sept. 3 video of a Republican group gathering. In it, Alfieri explains right up top why he’s seeking to become the leader of Coeur d’Alene.
“The reason I’m doing it, frankly, is I’m angry,” he says.
Now, anger has been proven to be an effective voter motivator in some quarters. But if you’re going to play the “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it any more” card, you’d better back up your bluster with solid policy.
That’s not what Alfieri did. The first plank he laid out was an obtuse comment about kids in pre-kindergarten having to declare a gender.
His second plank was about one of the greatest magnets of conspiracy theory in our time: Agenda 21. If you don’t know what that is, Joe advised, look it up. (We did, and it's a 29-year-old, non-binding statement of intent addressing issues of sustainability. It was signed by leaders of 178 countries.)
What either pre-K gender identification or Agenda 21 has to do with the role and responsibilities of CDA mayor is beyond us. Voters, we hope it’s also beyond you.
The anti-Alfieri happens to be running for Coeur d’Alene mayor in this same election. He’s a strong conservative, a devout Christian and one of the kindest, most qualified candidates you'll ever meet. His name is Jim Hammond.
Jim has been a state senator, the mayor of Post Falls, Coeur d’Alene city administrator and he’s served in other governmental posts. But he also was an educator — a teacher and an administrator — and he’s been self-employed in the insurance business.
In other words, his experience bridges all facets of life in this region, from working with young kids to representing constituents of all ages, political persuasions and economic statuses. In his eyes, there is no such thing as trash; just people.
A recent candidate endorsement letter to the editor pegged Jim perfectly: It referred to him as a gentleman. That’s the Jim Hammond so many of us have come to know over many years, a gentleman with a heart for service, an ear for all opinions and a head for sound policy that leads to effective governance.
Don’t fall for the mad mob mentality. Coeur d’Alene deserves better leadership than that. Coeur d'Alene deserves the kind of leadership Jim Hammond will provide —— reasoned yet passionate, and always positive.