Took a bullet for the mayor? If only he were so valiant. Gaffney has his "soft spots" and "secrets" as do several other elected officials. Someone knew just where to push and what to promise in return in order to get Gaffney to change course on this bill. The same goes for Reggie Brown, who some may remember was initially pontificating about equality and how the military had taken steps to change course with this regard etc. etc. All of that perspective was lost Wednesday night when he voted down the amended bill. Old school politics is what this is, nothing more, nothing less.
Make no mistake about the fact that Ms. Daniels (who remarked to the press "we won" after the vote) was making plenty of noise about this in her own political circles. Who exactly "won"? What was she really saying? Was this a game to her and some others? The manipulations and discussions that derailed this legislation were agreed upon at the eleventh hour, however some conversations and strategies about everything from this to boycotting committee meetings took place at Potters House Bistro, out of the sunshine. These meetings are also nothing new and have been going on for years at different locations. As much as the citizens may see Daniels as an outsider, she is very much a part of what is happening in some areas of local politics.
On another note there was pressure also coming to certain members of council from several black preachers to oppose this legislation. This pressure was of great influence because it is through these preachers that many local black politicians raise money and support when they are running for office. Smiting them can ruin a career. My guess is that Ms. Lee and Mr. Jones are not planning on running for office in the immediate future here in Jacksonville.