I like Michael DelGiorno’s radio show. I listen regularly and call in occasionally. I’ve appreciated him opening his mic and phone lines to Nashvillians to explore the issues and get to know the candidates in Nashville’s mayoral election. I’ve found him to be forthright and evenhanded while maintaining his personal values and views.
Which is why today’s show segment featuring Dave Ramsey and Bob Clement was surprising. Mike promised to ask about the allegations the Clement campaign had unfairly and incorrectly represented Karl Dean’s position on the issue of Property Taxes in TV and print ads. I was very interested to hear what Clement had to say.
When the moment came, however, and the question was asked, all we got was a recitation of what we already knew, that Bob Clement promises not to raise property taxes in his first term while Karl Dean, despite many opportunities to do so, does not. If that was all that Clement was using to run on for this issue, that would have been an acceptable answer and plenty of ammo to use against Dean.
But the ads go far beyond that. They accuse Dean of denying that voters, 77% of whom voted to limit Metro’s power to raise property taxes, have the right to vote that way. The claim is made in such a way that Dean is portrayed as speaking personally when he says this. But it is possible he was speaking professionally. Perhaps he was offering a professional opinion to his employer, Metro Nashville, in his capacity as legal director on the legality of that vote. In that case, Clement’s use of the statements would be disturbingly deceptive.
Which side of the charge is true? Which is false? And should Bob Clement be held accountable? After all, he’s Bob Clement and he should have approved that message.
Sadly, the best chance we had to find out is gone. Because when Clement responded in practiced, political campaign mode and acknowledged the question but didn’t answer it, Michael DelGiorno gave him a pass. He didn’t object, he didn’t ask clarifying questions, he didn’t do anything but move on the the next question. In short, he didn’t do his job.
His listeners and the people of Nashville were ill-served for that having happened.
Hoping the Michael we know and love sits down behind the mic on Monday …
Blue Collar Muse