In and outs of the political campaigns, focusing on Michigan and Lansing, Tim Skubick will report regularly throughout the primary and then general election campaigns.
Sunday, June 15, 2008
The "D" Word
If Kwame Kilpatrick's name was in a thesaurus, you would find the synonym "distraction" next to it. The Mayor of Detroit and his legal woes has become a huge distraction if you believe the folks who are watching this drama unfold. Governor Jennifer Granholm uses the word; Dick Blouse who runs the Detroit Regional Chamber of Commerce uses the word; the head of Consumers Energy's and Detroit Renaissance member David Joos uses the word and now even the man himself agrees. "This is my choice," the mayor says as he decides to skip the Barack Obama events in Motown this week. Kilpatrick says he does not want to be a distraction adding, "I want Barack Obama to have his moment." That huge sigh of relief you hear is from the Obama camp. It is interesting that the mayor has reached the same conclusion that was the topic of discussion up on the Island during the recent leadership conference of business titans. A panel of journalists, to the person, concluded that when the democratic nominee for president ventured into Detroit he should not be seen with Mr. Kilpatrick. Little did the panel know that in the back of the room just off the main dinning room in the Grand Hotel sat the mother of the mayor. Suffice it to say Congresswoman Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick was not pleased with the remarks. Her feelings were totally understandable being the mom and all of her embattled off spring. Once she told her son about the comments, the mayor himself dismissed the journalist's comments as "crap." But somewhere between the "crap" and right now, reality has apparently sunk it. It was an act of statesmanship for the mayor to do his buddy Barack a favor by simply bowing out for the next two days as Obama stumps in Detroit for the first time. The nominee for president did not need any photos standing next to you know who. That would have been the story in Detroit and Obama's "Yes We Can" message would have been ignored by the media. So give the mayor credit. His decision amounts to no harm, no foul, and more importantly for Obama, no distraction.