Friday, January 13, 2017

All he wanted was a little attention

When a bullying demagogue like Jeff Landry shows up in your town looking to take advantage of your local anxieties in order to further his own cynical political advancement, it's actually not difficult to shut him down. All you have to do is call his bullshit out for what it is once or twice.  That's what the mayor and the police chief did last week.
The conflict came to a head last week, when Police Superintendent Michael Harrison, in a pointed letter, invoked the city's home rule charter and bluntly warned Landry that he lacked the authority "to engage in active law enforcement in New Orleans."

"He's putting the lives of my police officers and the lives of state troopers at risk," Landrieu told The Advocate on Friday, referring to Landry. "He doesn't seem to understand that policing is a partnership."
If he persists in his stupidity after that, the best course is to ignore it and go about the regular business. We're used to seeing politicians with statewide ambitions use New Orleans as a straw man to beat on. That's mostly what Landry is up to anyway. There's not much anyone can do to stop him. But as long as no one humors the stunt he'll probably get tired of it after a few months and go away.

So now is the time to keep calm and not enable the... oh... goddammit.
The city's sheriff, its district attorney and the head of one of its two main police unions are siding with Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry against New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu in the debate over a small but controversial anti-crime task force.

All three men have written letters of support for the task force that Landry has dispatched into New Orleans in recent months to fight violent crime.
Oh well. Congratulations, Mr. Attorney General. You've successfully placed yourself as a gamepiece on one of the stupider checkerboards of city politics. Guess you can hang around a while. Have fun.

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