Saturday, February 22, 2014

Know your political carnival rules

A few weeks ago, City Council At-Large candidate Jason Williams accused his opponent Cynthia Hedge-Morrell of violating electioneering rules on the day of the primary.
In complaints filed Tuesday, Williams alleged that Hedge-Morrell handed out sample ballots within 600 feet of a polling place, a violation of state law, even after being advised to leave. The complaints were filed with the Louisiana secretary of state, the Orleans Parish inspector general and the parish Board of Election Supervisors.

Williams said he believes Hedge-Morrell violated voting laws by visiting the Guste High-Rise Retirement Community, a senior living facility that serves as a polling site, on the day of the election. Hedge-Morrell does not deny visiting the building that day but says she was visiting with constituents.

Williams and Hedge-Morrell — a district council member running for an at-large seat — will face each other in a runoff March 15.

Election law prohibits campaigning within 600 feet of the entrance of a polling place. Williams said tipsters called his campaign headquarters on election day to notify him that Hedge-Morrell had violated the rule.
This afternoon, Williams appeared in the inaugural parade of the (new) Krewe of Freret as the King.

Jason Williams

Here's what the city ordinance says about political advertising in Carnival parades.
No participants in any parade shall display in any manner in such parade any endorsement of candidates for elective public office, nor any endorsement of any issues to be voted on in an election. However, nothing contained in this provision shall be construed to prohibit the humorous caricature of current social events and issues. 
The sign on Williams' float simply says, "Jason Williams King of Krewe of Freret" but this does cut things pretty close to the line. 

1 comment:

Adrastos said...

They're hipster douchebags and carpetbaggers. They didn't even know that there had been a previous krewe of that name. They came to save us. We should thank them.