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The Jefferson County Teachers Association has withdrawn its endorsement of Third District School Board candidate David Toborowsky.

Brent McKim, president of the teachers association, said that over the last few days, the union’s political action committee, Better Schools Kentucky, “learned of some new information that raises questions about Mr. Toborowsky’s candidacy.”

“After looking into this matter further, Better Schools Kentucky has decided, at this time, to withdraw the endorsement of David Toborowsky and to discontinue its independent expenditures backing his endorsement, effective immediately,” McKim said in a statement.

At Monday night’s school board meeting, McKim told a Courier-Journal reporter the key issue pertains to Toborowsky’s residency status in District 3, which was questioned during a news report on WAVE-TV Monday evening.

It turns out that Toborowsky says he’s living with Chris ThienemanFrom WAVE3:

Toborowsky listed the address on Alia Circle in his election filing and his voter registration card to qualify to run for the school board’s 3rd district seat, but a teen, whom we can’t identify, told us Toborowsky didn’t live there.

The teen told us former mayoral candidate and real estate developer Chris Thienamen did.

When Thienamen showed up, he told us Toborowsky asked to move in shortly before the election’s filing deadline.

“He asked me. He said: ‘Listen, you know I want to run for this thing and I need a place to stay. Would you care if I lived with you?’ I said: ‘Absolutely not. You’re my best friend,'” said Thienamen.

“I just think it’s the wrong reasons, to move in to run,” said Steve Neal, former Executive Director of Jefferson County Teachers Association. “It’s just wrong.”

Neal says he heard about Toborowsky’s plan to move into the district at the last minute from JCTA President Brent McKim.

In fact, records show Toborowsky filed to run just hours before the deadline closed.

As the Education Voodoo blog points out, Thieneman’s address has been used for various political purposes.

A quick search on The Courier-Journal’s campaign contribution database turned up a BOATLOAD OF DONORS associated with 2606 Alia Circle. Maybe there is a glitch in the database search but it’s so crazy I can’t explain it.

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The two frontrunners in the primaries for Louisville mayor are holding on to their leads according to a new poll.

A Bluegrass Poll commissioned by the Courier-Journal and WHAS11 shows the number of undecided voters in the Republican and Democratic primaries shrinking by about half. Benefiting from the drop are Democrat Greg Fischer and Republican Hal Heiner. Fischer now holds 42 percent of the vote among Democrats, marking an 11 point increase from a similar poll released last month. Behind Fischer is Metro Councilman Jim King, who gained eight points and holds 21 percent of the vote. King has overtaken fellow Councilman David Tandy, who dropped to third with 13 percent of the vote. He previously polled at 16 percent.

In the Republican primary, Chris Thieneman remained in second place with 25 percent, but Councilman Hal Heiner strengthened his lead. He now polls at 63 percent, up from 42 percent last month.

In both races, 11 percent of likely voters were undecided.

The full results:

Democrats:

  • Greg Fischer – 42
  • Jim King – 21
  • David Tandy – 13
  • Tyler Allen – 7
  • Shannon White – 2
  • Connie Marshall -2
  • Burrell Farnsley – 2
  • Lisa Moxley – 1
  • Undecided – 11

Republicans:

  • Hal Heiner – 63
  • Chris Thieneman – 25
  • Jonathan Robertson – 1
  • Undecided – 11

Here are the latest campaign ads…

The mayor’s race:

Jim King‘s latest spot about merger

Greg Fischer‘s new TV spot, called “Best Qualified”

Chris Thieneman again goes negative on Hal Heiner in his latest TV spot

Congress:

Republican Todd Lally has a new ad

Metro Council:

Tina Ward-Pugh has a new mailer, touting her work on the smoking ban

The Courier-Journal is endorsing Democrat Greg Fischer and Republican Hal Heiner in their respective primaries in the mayor’s race.

From the Fischer endorsement:

Mr. Fischer, a successful businessman, makes a credible case that he is the candidate best suited to deal with the tight budgets and the need to stress job creation in the coming years.

[edit]

Moreover, after some initial confusion about his position, Mr. Fischer has unequivocally endorsed the record of decision on the Ohio River Bridges Project, which calls for simultaneously proceeding on construction of two bridges — one in the eastern part of the county, one downtown — and on a reconfiguration of Spaghetti Junction.

[edit]

Ideally, Mr. Fischer would have experience in elective office or public administration. He has neither. But his skill in organizing a campaign, financing it, gaining support from a wide range of individuals and organizations, and drawing up a comprehensive platform reflects qualities that would be well-suited to the top job in City Hall.

[edit]

Mr. Fischer’s principal opponents appear to be Metro Council members David Tandy and Jim King.

Mr. Tandy, like Mr. Fischer, has provided voters with a detailed and progressive platform, and his personal style is open and engaging. His campaign, however, has been disappointing. Visibility has been low, and he has not raised money to have a presence on television. It’s unfortunate that such issues become important, but a political reality is that there is often a genuine relationship between ability to run an effective campaign and readiness to perform in high office.

[edit]

Mr. King, a successful banker and accountant, has praiseworthy organizational skills, grasp of issues and knowledge of city government. In most circumstances, we would expect him to be a top candidate for mayor. Unfortunately, however, he is burdened with a heavy load of personal and ethical baggage that, in our view, disqualifies him — at least this time around.

From the Heiner endorsement:

His experience in the private and public sectors, as well as his clarity of vision and expression, position him as the best candidate, and he should be the GOP voters’ choice on May 18. Mr. Robertson simply does not have the profile needed to be Mayor, and Mr. Thieneman simply does not possess the gravitas or the communication skills the office demands. Mr. Heiner more than makes up for their lacks in those important areas.

He promises to do the job with a “100 percent” commitment to open and transparent government. He also promises to make job creation his main focus, if elected.

He backs up his talking points with an array of specific suggestions and strategies too numerous to mention here.

[edit]

On other issues, Mr. Heiner opposed the library referendum but he says he is not happy with the progress that has occurred in the absence of the tax. He said he will move to implement a master plan, and voters should hold him to that promise if he is elected.

Voters should also know that he says he supports the record of decision in the Ohio River Bridges Project and supports the building of both bridges now.

[edit]

He says he is committed to a vibrant core city, not just the suburbs as some voters fear, because a strong core is necessary for attracting new business and jobs.

The Heiner endorsement has fewer digs at the other candidates, though that’s expected with such a crowded Democratic primary. The “This time around” comment about Jim King is worth noting, as are the references to the bridges project in both pieces. The ORBP never became a full-fledged campaign issue for all of the candidates, though with Tyler Allen set to air TV ads about it, it could bubble up again in the next week. Yesterday, in a piece on Tyler Allen, Bridges Coalition chair David Nicklies was quoted saying the next mayor “has to be with” the current bridges plan.

In the Fischer endorsement, the CJ notes his lack of political experience, though credits his campaign and business history as evidence of leadership abilities. The last two mayors of Louisville (Abramson, Armstrong) held previous government offices, and if one of the nominees for either party is not a Metro Councilman, then Louisville could have its first politically new (relatively) mayor in years. We’ve seen a few notable businessmen politicians on the national scene (BloombergRomney) and Louisville certainly has a history of electing mayors who haven’t been in politics for very long, but it will be interesting to see what credentials voters favor in the primaries and general election. It’s also possible that experience won’t have anything to do with it and voters will go for the person and the plan, not the party or history.

Republican candidate for mayor Chris Thieneman has a new video that quotes 32nd President Franklin Delano Roosevelt.

I recently interviewed Thieneman for an upcoming story on the GOP primary. He said many of his supporters are in the Tea Party. FDR is no hero to many Tea Partiers (small government supporters and fiscal conservatives), so what do you think of this video? Will it win Thieneman more supporters outside of his base or upset some of his core constituents? Both? Neither?

Republican candidate for mayor Chris Thieneman has released his first TV ad. You can watch it here.

Thieneman has positioned himself as the most anti-Abramson candidate in the race, but as LEO points out, it may not work; the current GOP frontrunner is Metro Councilman Hal Heiner, who is visually compared to Abramson in the clip, but has been a frequent opponent of the mayor on the council.

Cross-post with WFPL News

Democrat Greg Fischer and Republican Hal Heiner have pulled ahead in their respective primaries in the Louisville mayor’s race, according to a new poll.

The latest Bluegrass Poll commissioned by the Courier-Journal and WHAS-11 puts Fischer ahead of the seven other Democrats in the race with 31 percent of the vote. Behind him are Metro Councilman David Tandy with 16 percent and Councilman Jim King with 13 percent.

A poll last month put Fischer at 20 percent, ahead of Tandy, who had 17, and King, who had 12.

Councilman Hal Heiner leads opponent Chris Thieneman 42 to 25 percent in the Republican primary. That’s a reversal from last month’s poll. It put Thieneman ahead of Heiner by 4 points.

The poll, conducted by Survey USA, also found that one in four voters is undecided. A total of eight Democrats, three Republicans and at least three independent candidates are running for mayor.

The results:

Democrats

  • Fischer – 31%
  • Tandy – 16%
  • King – 13%
  • Allen – 7%
  • White – 4%
  • Farnsley – 2%
  • Marshall – 2%
  • Moxley – 2%
  • Undecided – 23%

Republicans

  • Heiner – 42%
  • Thieneman – 25%
  • Robertson – 9%
  • Undecided 24%

Republican candidate for mayor Chris Thieneman has shown teeth while discussing his primary opponent Hal Heiner, but the Thieneman campaign took it to a new level today with the Heiner’s Heist website.

The site questions Heiner’s private-sector work, a possible conflict of interest in the Metro Council and a business development in southern Indiana.

Joe Burgan with the Heiner campaign says the negative turn is upsetting.

“Unfortunately, [Thieneman] doesn’t have a record of job creation to run on, so he’s going to attack Hal’s,” he says.

In response to Heiner’s work in Indiana, Burgan says, “The facts are this: two companies were looking to leave Louisville–they were looking at going to Canada, South Carolina, Texas, Tennessee–and they stayed in the region and 440 Louisvillians kept their jobs…While, yes, they’re crossing the bridge to go to work, they’re bringing their paychecks back to Louisville.”

Burgan says the campaign will not hit back. “Absolutely not,” he says. “We’re going to continue to stay on our message and run a positive campaign.”

Thieneman led Heiner in the race’s first and only poll, but it’s rumored that another poll will be released soon.

Republican Chris Thieneman was on TV the other day discussing FEMA grants and the recent audit of Metro Government.

Democrats Tyler Allen and Jim King also spoke out about the audit. Allen held a press conference and King made this statement:

“As many in this community are aware, I’ve long had concerns over the level of transparency at City Hall.  While I’m pleased that the mayor is focusing on our accounting system, I’m still convinced the only way to hold government truly accountable and for the people of this community to trust its government is to open the city’s books to the light of day.  As a Metro Councilman, I have worked to improve the levels of transparency by creating the city’s Government Accountability and Oversight Committee and authoring the city’s Transparency Ordinance.  I am the only practicing CPA on the Metro Council and in the race for mayor and if elected, on day one I will implement a system of internal accountable controls that will eliminate the material weaknesses and significant control deficiencies that currently exist in Metro Government’s accounting system.”

Metro Council leaders Madonna Flood, Hal Heiner and Ken Fleming have weighed in on the audit. Heiner is also a Republican candidate for mayor. His campaign has this statement:

“Unfortunately this could just be the tip of the iceberg, which is why Councilman Heiner has laid out a plan in his transparency policy that calls for a full scale audit of every department and agency in Metro Government.  Ultimately it is the mayor’s responsibility to have a financial management system in place that can be relied upon, and what has developed over the past 20 years is a culture of complacency in managing taxpayer dollars.  A fiscally sound city is paramount for Louisville to win new jobs, and a Heiner Administration will work to that end.”

Democrat Greg Fischer‘s campaign sent this:

“As an outsider to the Mayor’s Office and Metro Council, the findings from the state auditors report are troubling.  I am aware of the findings and don’t like them at all.  I haven’t run my businesses this way and I won’t let something like this happen on my watch as Mayor.”

And Metro Councilman and Democratic candidate David Tandy‘s campaign spokesperson says he…

…is reviewing the audit and will incorporate the findings into his plan to make metro government transparent and accountable when he is mayor.

LEO Weekly got their hands on what appear to be the leaked Courier-Journal/WHAS11/SurveyUSA poll for the mayoral campaign. The C-J is expected to release these Sunday, so we’ll post an update then and compare the accuracy. LEO says the numbers were obtained through “dogged reporting,” but we don’t have confirmation from the C-J, WHAS11, SurveyUSA or the campaigns.

The results (liked above) put Greg Fischer and David Tandy at the head of the Democratic primary, with Jim King close behind and Tyler Allen a little further back. More voters appear to be undecided than supporting any specific candidate.

LEO reports that Chris Thieneman leads the Republican primary with a slight lead over Hal Heiner, and undecided voters still having the power to swing it either way.

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