Sunday, January 20, 2008

We need to urge Leo to debate!

This Tuesday is the scheduled debate for the Democratic candidates for State Rep. for the 7th Bristol district, but unless he changes his mind, Councilor Leo Pelletier will not be taking the stage at Bristol Community College. Instead, Councilor Pelletier will be taking his familiar seat during a city council meeting scheduled for the same night.

By attending the city council meeting Councilor Pelletier may feel he's living up to his commitment to the people of Fall River, but by skipping the debate he's cheating the very people he hopes to represent in the state house. By not participating in the debate Candidate Pelletier is losing the chance to share his platform and denying us the chance to learn where the he stands.

Where does Leo stand? If elected will he retain his city council seat? If so how will he deal with the inevitable conflicts between those two positions? Considering he's skipping the debate it's a fair question and exactly the reason why Leo needs to debate.

It's my understanding that attempts have been made to reschedule the debate to the 24th but the resulting conflicts with our candidates mean that the debate HAS to take place on the 22nd. It's also my understanding that when the 22nd was suggested that no candidate mentioned a conflict.

If someone seriously wants to be our next State Representative it's a position they need to earn. Each candidate should do their best to make their positions and platform known. It's not enough to rely on popularity and name recognition.

If you agree, contact Councilor Pelletier and urge him to participate in this debate.

31 comments:

just jenn said...

I think it is obvious that Leo is afraid of debating... It was after his debate with Hodgson for the Sheriff's, that I made my decision to vote for Hodgson. It also explains why he never showed up to any of the candidates forums when they were held just prior to the last election.

It Said said...

The City Council meeting schedule was likely decided back in December..a simple phone call would have made scheduling a moot point...

Leo is doing what he was elected to do..not his fault that those in charge of the debate fell asleep at the switch..

Would it be better if he did debate? If nothing else it would liven up what is sure to be a pretty boring affair without him..

Fall River Community said...

The point is that Leo said if elected, he would keep both positions until re-elected to the State House in November.

Now, from February to November, there will surely be conflicts between the City Council and State Representative roles. When those conflicts arise, which will he choose?

Now, there is also the Herald News article that says that all candidates confirmed that they would appear. Surely the sponsors have some culpability here, but why did Leo commit to appear at the debate rather than pointing out to the sponsors that a conflict existed?

Leo's presence won't matter at the City Council meeting. It is the first meeting and all resolutions will pass unanimously. In the chance that there is a 4-4 tie, the issue can be resolved in 2 weeks at the next meeting. Whereas, absence at this debate has a greater impact on the city.

Leo is inarticulate and afraid to debate - there is a pattern going back to at least 2005.

Anonymous said...

As a person who has a state rep that is also on the city council I can tell you that any conflicts will be minor compared to the advantage of having a person who can work with both the state and the city to
BRING HOME THE BACON !!!!!!

Lefty said...

Anon,

You make an interesting point. The dual role might be something that can be used to advantage. However does that mean that Councilor Pelletier will be able to use it to advantage? I don't know.

There are many that fault Leo for a lack of education and for being inarticulate. However Leo certainly knows how to 'glad-hand' and work behind the scenes. Is the Leo someone I would vote for? I'm not sure. It really comes down to, is he the best person for the job?

Anonymous said...

"There are many that fault Leo for a lack of education and for being inarticulate. However Leo certainly knows how to 'glad-hand' and work behind the scenes."

Whoever said that a State Rep. needs an education in Masachusetts ....I always thought that being able to "GLAD HAND" was a better asset

Fall River Community said...

Anonymous,

The problem of course is that in order to "glad hand," the State Rep. will need the respect of his colleagues. Given Leo's history, appearance, and "skills," earning the respect of others will be a huge barrier for him.

Second, even if Leo does become a jovial character, good representatives shift that likeability to support of legislative initiatives.

What was the most recent resolution authored by Leo in the City Council?

What's the point of electing a State Representative who doesn't have the skills to understand, research or author legislation?

Anonymous said...

"What's the point of electing a State Representative who doesn't have the skills to understand, research or author legislation?"

It appears that you don't really understand how the Massachusetts State House works ....It has long been a leading example of WHO YOU KNOW NOT WHAT YOU KNOW

Fall River Community said...

No matter how friendly a State Representative is, legislation must be sponsored in order to "cash in" on that support.

Leo will face hurdles in receiving support from his colleagues. So, not only will he not know anything, but he won't know anyone either.

The State House works like any other legislature. Representatives write bills and they seek the support of others to achieve the votes necessary to pass the bill. Leo can't write legislation.

Since my question went unanswered, I will repeat it: What was the most recent resolution authored by Leo in the City Council?

Finally, by stating the State House operates as "a leading example of WHO YOU KNOW NOT WHAT YOU KNOW," are you admitting that Leo doesn't have the knowledge for the job?

Finally, if the State House does operate in that fashion, isn't there a candidate in the race who already has established relationships with other State Representatives and thus has the ability to accomplish goals because its "who he knows?"

Anonymous said...

I am admitting nothing , I simply stated the obvious ...You state that Leo will face hurdles in receiving support from his colleagues ....HOW DO YOU KNOW THAT ? Also to say that it is the Representatives themselves that write the bills is wrong ...While some bills may be penned solely by Rep. that majority are written by the staff or the constituency ....By the way our lustrous State House has operated in that fashion since the founding fathers ....

Fall River Community said...

Anon,

Also to say that it is the Representatives themselves that write the bills is wrong ...While some bills may be penned solely by Rep. that majority are written by the staff or the constituency

....HOW DO YOU KNOW THAT ?

By the way our lustrous State House has operated in that fashion since the founding fathers ....

....HOW DO YOU KNOW THAT ?

If the State House is about "WHO YOU KNOW NOW WHAT YOU KNOW", who does Leo know at the State House that would be beneficial to his candidacy?

Second, even if some legislation is written by a Rep.'s staff, shouldn't the Rep. be competent to understand what is going on?

We already have experience in an elected official who is not too bright and instead surrounded himself with "smart" people. That experiment has not worked out too well.

Finally, for the 3rd time, what is the most recent City Council resolution authored by Leo?

Anonymous said...

leo pelletier is a lunatic. i cannot believe anyone would consider "promoting" him to higher office.

Anonymous said...

From the last two comments it appears as that the is either a conspiracy against Leo or that he is really a lunatic unfit for to lead at any level ....If the former is true then shame on you for besmirching the man's name ....If the later is true then shame on you again for electing him to your city council

Fall River Community said...

There is no conspiracy against Leo. This is an election and people have opinions on the qualifications of the candidates. I feel sorry for someone who thinks that sharing the opinion of a political candidate is a conspiracy, rather than an applied use of the First Amendment.

As for besmirching Leo's name, he doesn't need my help for that. Simply read http://www.heraldnews.com/opinions/x469087316
to see how the Herald News feels about Leo's cowardly acts of avoiding debates, forums, or another other means of communicating with the voters.

Finally, I didn't vote for Leo for City Council, and I am very ashamed that he is there!

Notice, nothing in the previous comment even bothers to argue on the merits why Leo is a good city councilor or why he should be elected to be the next State Representative.

Anonymous said...

This blog in it's entirety has done nothing but bash leo pelletier ....From the author to the commentary it has been nothing but negative ...No hard fact just innuendo as to his ability & past record ....

Fall River Community said...

Anon 7:20,

Here are the facts....

http://fallrivercommunity.blogspot.com/2008/01/why-wont-leo-debate.html

That blogpost even links to Herald News articles to support my points.

2005:

With 17 of the 18 candidates present, little of substance could be discussed during the 90-minute debate."

"The lone candidate not to show up to Thursday night’s event was City Council Vice President Leo O. Pelletier."

2007:

Five of the six incumbents seeking re-election participated: Joseph D. Camara, Patricia A. Casey, Raymond E. Hague, Thomas Kozak and Linda M. Pereira.

Which incumbent is missing???

2008:

Can't debate because of a City Council conflict? .... FINE

Even though WSAR made available the entire broadcast schedule to Leo, he still refused to appear.

If Leo can't debate against his opponents, how will he debate at the State House in support or in opposition of bills that affect Fall River?

Those are the facts, now here comes the opinion....

Leo should be ashamed of himself for his absolute failure to do his part as a candidate in trying to reach out to the voters. Further, any voter who votes for Leo also shares the collective shame of such a pitiful candidate.

Lefty said...

Anon, (7:20)

I don't believe I've bashed Councilor Pelletier. As for the commentary I allow people to leave whatever comments they like as long as they don't cross the line of decency.

Leo's lack of education isn't innuendo it's something that Leo has discussed himself. Personally, while I consider higher education an asset I don't confuse education with intelligence. I have never accused Leo of being stupid.

Leo's inarticulateness is simply opinion.

Whether or not Leo is capable of being an effective State Rep. is certainly VERY worthy of discussion and apparently there are commentators here who feel he is not.

What is the argument for Leo being the best man for the job? I agree that Leo has a good record for constient service and he's not afraid to take up an unpopular position. I'm not sure that is enough.

Leo is running against 3 other candidates that bring different qualities to the table. Kevin Aguiar has local political experience and an impressive educational resume. Tony Sousa has experience working IN the State House, relationships with people that he would need to work with as a State Rep, and he too has an impressive educational resume. John Rodrigues has a background in public safety that gives him insight into an important city issue.

How does Leo stack up to these guys? It's a fair question and one that Leo should have answered by participating in the debate.

Anonymous said...

Again I will state this blog has done nothing but bash Leo ...Read the above comment from the author ...ALL NEGATIVE ABOUT LEO and all positive about the other candidates ....How about listing some of their negatives ...OR ARE THEY PERFECT

Lefty said...

Anon (9:04),

With all due respect, stop whining.

I've already said that Leo has a good record for constituent service and he's not afraid to take up an unpopular position. I'll add to that as say that his many years of city council experience gives him a familiarity of the political process. Keep in mind though that what goes on in the State House is a LOT different from what goes on in the council chambers. His years of service also means he already has a rapport with our local delegation.

I don't know if Leo is the best candidate. It's one of the reasons why I am disappointed that he didn't participate in the forum. However, I certainly don't feel Leo is incapable of doing the job. In fact I think Leo is a better candidate than at least one of his opponents.

If you want a list of what makes Leo the best candidate I suggest you start typing. If you feel Leo has so many great qualities you certainly have failed to mention them. Don't blame us for not making his case for him.

Fall River Community said...

Anon,

You support Leo. I do not.

You said I had no facts. I gave you facts.

I don't understand why you are so bothered about the expression of my opinion.

The reason why a lot of attention is on Leo is frankly because of Leo. Had he debated on the 22nd, it would all be a distant memory by now. Instead there was a Herald News editorial and the forum that again brought attention onto Leo and his lack of commitment to the voters.

Now, if you disagree with my opinions on Leo, you can either stop reading the blog (which I do not recommend), or you can start your own blog where you can write all the wonderful things about Leo.

"If you want a list of what makes Leo the best candidate I suggest you start typing. If you feel Leo has so many great qualities you certainly have failed to mention them."

If you want to bash other candidates, let's go for it !!

Kevin Aguiar wants to keep both the School Committee and State Rep. jobs.... how can he do both jobs effectively?

Anonymous said...

Well it seems the answer is obvious, my obtuse friend. One candidate was able to use some time management skills. Mr Pelletier obviously was too busy to attend a public forum. Is the public to believe these transparent lies? I expect my State Rep to be able to figure out their own priority list. Mr. Pellietier is banking on name recognition and a blitz of sticker covered political signs. Pelleitier's no-show is extremely arrogant and assumes that the actual voters, beyond one's fanatics, are ignorant of his feeble political ploy.
I say this, Pelletier wants to bring home that bacon?, but how much bacon can you get being chicken! Signed Frank X

Anonymous said...

Lefty you should work for the Clintons ....Your backhanded slap at Leo was well thought out but obvious ....What you need to do is endorse a candidate state your case as to why ....STEP UP TO THE PLATE and swing that bat

Lefty said...

Anon,

You must be a lot sharper than I, because I wasn't even aware of the well thought out backhanded slap at Leo. Care to elaborate?

I'm not going to endorse a candidate, but I will say out of the 4, Kevin Aguiar and Tony Sousa are the candidates I would most consider voting for at this point. After listening to the forum and reading the various write ups in the Herald I find myself more in agreement with Aguiar on the issues. However I feel that Sousa's experience in State House, and the relationships he has already built make him an a candidate worthy of consideration.

As for Leo, I am just not convinced he is the best candidate. I think the Herald nailed it today in their endorsement of Aguiar - "Pelletier has significant experience in public office, routinely garnering the most votes in his City Council campaigns. But his down-home style and penchant for direct constituent service make him better suited for the local legislature than the state’s."

Anonymous said...

Yes I would
"In fact I think Leo is a better candidate than at least one of his opponents."
In your own words....Better than a LEAST one ....In other words NOT THAT GOOD ...Hillary is falling in the polls ....Send her your resume ...Not going to endorse a candidate ....WHY ? ...Take a stand don't wishy wash about

Lefty said...

Actually at least one means possibly better than more than one.

As far as endorsements go, I'm flattered you feel my endorsement would mean something.

As for taking a stand, you still haven't made any real argument for Leo. If you think Leo is the best candidate can't you tell us why?

I've already stated that I favor Kevin Aguiar and Tony Sousa. I find myself more in agreement with Kevin, but I value Sousa's experience at the State House. Which would be more effective as our Representative? I haven't really made up my mind.

Anonymous said...

I agree with you lefty, except for the fact that Sousa is a newcomer and it appears that this is a two dog race. Does Sousa play the proverbial Nader in this election, which is to say, beyond getting his name out, that he is primarily taking votes from agiar. Also Sousa has taken a stance against the majority in the state house, to include Sal Dimasi in regard to gaming-not a good way to start. I am not undecided and i feel that in order for anyone's vote to count, you have to pick either Kevin or leo- I will be voting Kevin--Frank X

Lefty said...

Frank,

I'm a firm believer in voting for who you believe is the best candidate and not for who you believe has the best chance of winning.

I believe when we vote simply for 'who can win' we deny good candidates our support and thwart our right to choose who represents us.

I concede that sometimes that principle takes a backseat to reality and sometimes you have to vote for the best candidate with a reasonable chance of winning.

Anonymous said...

Hey Lefty, I never said that I support Leo only that this blog (BOTH AUTHOR AND COMMENTATORS) has made a consistent effort to bash Leo with innuendo ...

"I haven't really made up my mind.
"

THE ELECTION IS ONE DAY AWAY ...STOP WISHY WASHING AND BE A MAN ...WHEN YOU GO INTO THE POLLS TOMORROW WHO ARE YOU GOING TO VOTE FOR ?

Fall River Community said...

Anon,

First, neither Lefty nor anyone else is compelled to reveal for whom they will vote.

Second, now you are saying that you never said that you were supporting Leo.

Why are you urging others to reveal their votes when you won't do the same?

When I bash Leo, I bash him with facts, not innuendo.

Do I really have to go through the series of debates and forums in which Leo was absent again?

Lefty said...

Anon,

Don't be concerned I know exactly whom I am going to vote for.

Anonymous said...

Then let the world know Lefty ....You appear to be the kind of person who never makes a commitment ....What is Ted Williams stood there with the bat on his shoulder and never took a swing ....
As for Fall River Community you are correct that a ordinary person does not have to reveal who they are voting for but that is not the case as far a Lefty is concerned ....Lefty needs to either endorse or stop blogging