The Baton Rouge Mayor’s Race Has Begun, And Obama’s Already Running

Or something.

Mike Walker, who most people think is the Republican guy most likely to make the runoff against the Democrat incumbent Kip Holden, just put out an ad which made Holden into Obama.


“Don’t be Kipnotized” is pretty good stuff, though. Holden has this weird ability to make business people think he’s somehow on their side, and calling that “Kipnotization” ain’t a half-bad turn of a phrase.

And yeah, saying murders and violent crime are down in Baton Rouge does pretty much constitute denial. Nobody believes that stuff. That poll this week where 43 percent of the people the Baton Rouge Area Foundation’s folks talked to said they were scared to walk down their own street pretty much puts to bed any idea that Holden’s going to convince people crime’s droppin’ off.

That’s probably all we’re gonna hear about this cycle. Crime, crime, crime.

Truth be told, it was crime that got Holden elected in the first place. If Bobby Simpson’s cops had ever been able to catch Derrick Todd Lee he might not have lost to Kip eight years ago; the fact that Lee was able to whack women all over Baton Rouge pretty much anytime he wanted made Simpson look like a boob, and folks were so irritated by that they were willing to give somebody else a shot.

Enter Kip, who bamboozled all the business folks into thinkin’ he was good for them and got elected on that.

Those business folks who have fat contracts with the city still think Kip’s swell. Everybody else, not so much.

And yeah, that does sound familiar to the “private sector’s doin’ fine” guy.

Here’s the thinkin’ behind Walker’s ad, because you guys who are readin’ this are probably wonderin’ whether it’s smart to make Holden into Obama when what that might do is consolidate the Obama people into Holden people.

You gotta remember the election dates.

On November 6 we’re gonna have the PRIMARY in the mayor’s race. That means that the Obama voters will be votin’ then. Of course, so will the anti-Obama voters. If you just say Obama’s voters in East Baton Rouge Parish are all black and the anti-Obama voters in the parish are all white, which isn’t really true but functionally it’s not completely off the mark, makin’ a vote for Kip the same as a vote for Barry might or might not get Kip to 50 percent-plus-one and avoid the runoff.

But if that works, and Walker can hold Kip under 50 while makin’ the runoff, Obama’s all of a sudden not on the ballot anymore and a good many of the Obama people who’d go vote for Kip in the primary since they’re already in the booth to vote for Obama, those folks might very well stay home.

But of the anti-Obama people, just as many of them in this parish are anti-Kip as well. So if you can keep them irritated about Holden and how he’s just like Obama, you can make sure you’ll turn out that crowd for the runoff.

And there are some more parallels Walker can exploit. After all, Holden is every bit as pitiful in dealin’ with the Metro Council as Obama is with Congress. Of course, Walker is on the Metro Council and most people think that’s a ship of fools that makes John Boehner and Harry Reid look like Jefferson and Adams, but Walker can tell his own story there and maybe it’ll fly.

Holden and Obama are both tax addicts, particularly when it comes to soakin’ the rich, so there’s that.

And Holden has a real nasty streak like Obama does as well, though just like Obama nobody really wants to hear it because Kip is pretty good about showin’ up for all the things where he can do the “I’m your friendly mayor” act, and that’s pretty similar to the way everybody still talks about how likable Obama is.

But there’s a narrative in there somewhere. Maybe this ad about bein’ Kipnotized is the start of Walker rollin’ that out.

And maybe it’ll work. If not, we’re gonna get a third term of the Kipster. If we do, he’s gonna want to raise taxes again. That you can bet on.



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