Moore on Maumelle: The parallel candidacies of Chad Gardner and R.J. Mazzoni

By The Times

It is no secret that Chad Gardner and R.J. Mazzoni are running for the Maumelle City Council Ward 2 position. They both took to Facebook recently to announce their intentions with a video post. Each candidate chose Lake Willastein as the setting for his announcement; both candidates have young children attending Academics Plus Charter School; both regularly attend City Council meetings and have been visible and vocal at community events. Gardner is 41 and Mazzoni is 50. They also happen to be friends and live near each other, unfortunately in the same City Council Ward. They are both running for Position 2, currently held by Rick Anderson, who is not seeking reelection.

Gardner is in the insurance business and Mazzoni is retired from the Air Force as a lieutenant colonel and continues as a civilian teaching pilots to fly C-130s at the Little Rock Air Force Base. Gardner is a cum laude graduate of Harding University and Mazonni is a graduate of the Air Force Academy and holds an MBA from Webster University. Both are nice guys.

Gardner has a Facebook page with some additional information and Mazzoni has posted a Facebook page and a website with more information. I would encourage you to check out both and inform yourself about which of these two quality candidates you’ll vote for in November. It’s not an easy choice.

The aftermath of Watson’s announcement

Mayor Mike Watson’s announcement that he will not seek reelection was not a huge surprise, but some of the buzz following the announcement was interesting. A couple of potential candidates were pretty open about their interest in the position, but when I asked them if they were considering it, they played coy and expressed surprise they would even be asked about it. Politicians can be like the loudest child in the room seeking attention and so predictable.

Still no word from Letecia Sanders on her intentions after an impromptu announcement in a rambling 14-minute video while endorsing Libertarian gubernatorial candidate Mark West. During her endorsement of West, she threw in an “oh, by the way, I’m running for mayor of Maumelle”-type comment. I’m pretty sure Ms. Sanders has never attended a City Council meeting, so her experience and familiarity with Maumelle city government are limited.

Following the mayor’s announcement, Council Member Jess Holt decided to announce that he was running for reelection. It didn’t really seem like the time to make such an announcement, but he did it anyway. Holt had told me earlier in the year he didn’t think he would run for the Council again, but that he would “run for something.” At this point, he has no announced opponent.

I got a note from City Council Member Ken Saunders confirming that he will run for reelection representing Ward 1, Position 2. He is also unopposed.

The city has posted a handy-dandy guide to the positions in city government that are expiring at the end of the year along with a description of the job responsibilities.

I know there are several out there considering a run for mayor, city attorney and City Council. The filing deadline is August. 17. Being coy won’t win anyone an election.

The dying art of civility

Sarah Huckabee Sanders has a difficult job defending a difficult president who regularly puts her in a compromising position as it relates to the truth. But all in all, I think she has done a commendable job defending a president who has a bit of trouble keeping his stories straight, making her job difficult every day.

But to deny her service at a public restaurant because the servers and owner of the establishment disagree with her politics is reprehensible.

It’s been a long time since I’ve seen a sign on a restaurant saying, “We have the right to refuse service to anyone.” And other than someone inappropriately dressed, lacking proper hygiene or general misbehavior, I can’t think of a reason to summarily dismiss someone from your place of business. The Red Hen Restaurant people may find the backlash more than they bargained for.

Shame on them.

And on another note, we continue to use separation of families as a method to discourage immigration. It won’t work. It’s not working. It’s a mess.

Shame on us.

Ending with a smile

Internet wisdom: “Heat makes things expand. I don’t have a weight problem. I’m hot.”

See you on the Boulevard.

This article provided by NewsEdge.