Several new endorsements have happened over the weekend. Today, The Clarion-Ledger endorsed Jonathan Lee for mayor, after endorsing Mayor Harvey Johnson Jr. in the primary. Sen. John Horhn, who ran for Jackson mayor, four years ago, has also endorsed Lee.
Over the weekend, new Sen. Sollie Norwood, formerly a JPS school-board member, endorsed Lumumba.
If you know of others, feel free to post them below. We will update this page with a full endorsement list Monday.
As we approach the mayoral runoff, which will most surely decide Jackson's next mayor, the rumors are flying fast and furious. One we heard yesterday is that Chokwe Lumumba "killed an FBI agent and got away with it." This is a false assertion. But it surely morphed out of his history as a young organizer with the Republic of New Afrika (RNA), based in Jackson in the early 1970s. As we explain in this article in 2005, the then-racist police department essentially had an angry stand-off with the militant Republic of New Afrika, headed by Imari Obadele, that culminated in an early-morning Waco-esque raid on the group's heavily armed headquarters in west Jackson. (JPD even brought the Thompson tank.)
The resulting gunfight left a police officer dead and an FBI officer injured. The legal battle that followed was complicated, in no small part because Obadele was not present, but local authorities wanted him punished for the crime. There were also state-federal jurisdictional hurdles to scale, but ultimately eight of the "RNA 11" ultimately served time, ironically because lawyers used the precedent set in the federal trial of Klansmen in Neshoba County who conspired to kill three civil rights workers. In the 1960s, a state court wouldn't convict them, but several went to prison for a time under a federal civil-rights conspiracy charge.
RNA member Chokwe Lumumba was not present, did not shoot anyone and did not serve time.
This open letter to mayoral candidate Jonathan Lee just came via email. Here it is, verbatim:
Jonathan Lee Candidate for Mayor of Jackson Public Letter
Dear Mr. Lee:
After watching one of your recent campaign commercials in which you portrayed Chokwe Lumumba as radical and racist, I was compelled to offer you a different world view.
I am a native of Yazoo city, the hometown of Michael Espy and Haley Barbour, two of our state’s most recognized political figures. Like Mike and Haley, I am a product of the public schools system, a graduate of Yazoo City High School. My ACT scores ranked me in the top 10 percentile in the country, and I was fortunate to earn distinction as a National Merit Finalist and accordingly received numerous scholarship offers.
Sarah King, my black, Northwestern University-educated high school guidance counselor told me….”You need to matriculate at Williams College, where you will be nurtured and taught to be a critical thinker. With a Williams College education, you will be equipped to change the world when you return to Mississippi. ”
So, naturally I chose Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts. Mrs. King was right on point. Williams College satisfied my natural thirst for knowledge and enlightenment, but it also showed me how easily one can cast seeds of discord and destroy a community.
Williams had a total of 60 black students enrolled in all classes. All of the students, from every conceivable ethnicity, were the top students in their high schools. A staff person in the admissions office remarked in one of the dining halls that they were pleasantly surprised at how well the minority students were performing – – especially the “10 percenters”. What was a 10 percenter?!
Shortly after this statement resonated, the campus newspaper ran a story that said Williams College was participating in a social experiment known as “Affirmative Action” and had elected to admit 10% of the students who would not ordinarily qualify for admission to the college.
The college wanted to honor its moral obligation to society by giving underprivileged, socially disadvantaged students the opportunity to obtain a Williams college education, but the newspaper article made the “10 percenter” concept appear as something to be ashamed of instead of portraying it as the wonderful program that it was.
Almost immediately, all students were trying to determine who was a 10 percenter. Some of them would be mean-spirited and say things that were destructive. A few said things like, “we know Herb Irvin is a 10 percenter, because he is from Yahoo, Mississippi”! All of a sudden, the black students were no longer on academic parity. Because of this 10 percenter phrase, the black students’ academic ability and capacity were questioned by the non-black students and the faculty, as well as by their fellow black students.
Some of the best black students left before graduation, because they didn’t believe that they earned the right to be there.
Against the advice of my classmates and friends, I ...
Democratic U.S. Rep. Bennie Thompson is wading into the Jackson mayor's race, and endorsing Councilman Chokwe Lumumba over political upstart and businessman Jonathan Lee.
In the R-and-B-laced radio ad, Thompson refrains from naming Lee but says: "When I see Republicans from Rankin and Madison counties endorsing the other so-called Democrat, I know something is fishy."
Thompson goes on to say that the Republicans supporting the other candidate are the same people who "opened their checkbooks last fall for Mitt Romney in an effort to kick President Obama out of the White House."
As JFP city reporter Tyler Cleveland has pointed out, six of Lee's 10 biggest contributors have given to the GOP or Republican causes in the past. Thompson hits every buzzword, saying "these Republicans want to pass charter schools, create voter-ID laws, cut Pell Grants, end Medicare and reduce Social Security benefits."
At the end of the ad, Thompson advises voters not to fall for "old Republican tricks" and to "vote for the real Democrat" on May 21.
In other states I've lived, it would have been highly unusual for a Congressman to get involved in a party primary. Perhaps this is normal for Mississippi. Or, maybe it's just normal for Rep. Thompson?
The campaign to elect City Councilman Chokwe Lumumba as mayor announced several endorsements from key city leaders Friday morning in front of City Hall.
Among the endorsements Lumumba received were State Representatives Earl Banks and Jim Evans and District 5 Hinds County Supervisor Kenneth Stokes and his wife, Ward 3 City Councilwoman LaRita Cooper Stokes. Former mayoral candidate Regina Quinn, who endorsed Lumumba through a press release earlier this week, was there to back up her reasons for endorsing the one-term Ward 2 Councilman for mayor.
"I'm here to strongly endorse Chokwe Lumumba to be our next mayor," Quinn said, adding that she came to her decision after "serious thought." Quinn cited a past Clarion-Ledger story that revealed that women in Jackson were being paid, on average, 73 percent of their male counterparts were for the same job.
As she said in her press release, Quinn stated she thinks Lumumba is the only candidate who will take swift action to correct what she called a "sad situation" in terms of women's pay.
After Banks and Evans pledged their support for Lumumba, Kenneth Stokes, speaking on his behalf and for his wife, who was in Chicago on Friday, took an opportunity to defend his candidate against some of the attack ads launched by his opponent in the May 21 runoff, Jonathan Lee.
The ad shows Chokwe Lumumba making a speech on Feb. 13, 2009, at what looks like a book store, where the candidate talked openly about the police, religion and the Democratic Party. The ad uses Lumumba's own words to lead viewers to believe that Lumumba doesn't like police, isn't a "Barack Obama Democrat" and doesn't believe in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
"(The accusations against Lumumba are) just nonsense coming out of evil people's mouths," Stokes said. "Chokwe has done more work with young people in this community, coaching basketball and mentoring them, showing them there's a better way to live. As Charles Tisdale would have said, Chokwe is a man among men. He's the type of leader who won't back down. This is Jack-town, and we need a man. I'll repeat it in case somebody didn't hear me - We need a man."
Lumumba has already said publicly that the clips from the video featured in the ad were taken out of context, that he has always supported the Jackson Police Department and that if voters watched the full video, they would see he wasn't implying what the ad infers.
Stokes finished his statement by saying he didn't intend to cuss, but that the Jackson Free Press "can kiss my ass!" He made this point with emphasis to a round of laughter from the assembled city leaders behind him. When asked after the press conference why he made the statement, Stokes said he said it because the JFP should have endorsed Lumumba, but did not elaborate more on the record. The Jackson Free Press has not endorsed a mayoral candidate for the runoff.
Lumumba concluded the ...
A local television report apparently has people confused about whether they can vote in the Democratic runoff for Jackson mayor and city council if they didn't bother to vote in the runoff. The answer is yes. Here is a statement from Jackson City Clerk Brenda Pree:
“ All registered voters are able to vote in their municipality’s runoff whether they voted in the first primary or not; however, there is no cross-over voting (i.e. if the voter voted in the Democratic Primary on May 7th, they must vote in the Democratic Runoff and vice versa for Republican—they cannot switch parties). A voter must be registered 30 days prior to the first Primary (May 7th) in order to vote in the Primary or Primary Runoff.”
Note that Jackson did not have a Republican primary this year, so it opens the door for any non-Democrats to flood the polls on Tuesday for the Democratic runoff.
That's the law, man.
Verbatim statement from the US DOJ:
MISSISSIPPI CORPORATION PLEADS GUILTY AND AGREES TO $ 1 MILLION FINE FOR ILLEGALLY FILLING PROTECTED WETLANDS
WASHINGTON – Mississippi-based Hancock County Land LLC (HCL) pleaded guilty today to the unpermitted filling of wetlands near Bay St. Louis, Miss., and agreed to pay a $1 million fine and take remedial measures for two felony violations of the Clean Water Act, announced Assistant Attorney General Ignacia S. Moreno of the Justice Department's Environment and Natural Resources Division and U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Mississippi Gregory K. Davis. HCL admitted causing the unauthorized excavation and filling of wetlands on a 1,710 acre parcel of undeveloped property in Hancock County, west of the intersection of Route 603 and Interstate 10.
According to the charges filed in federal court in Jackson, Miss., when HCL purchased the property, it had been informed by a wetland expert that as much as 80 percent of its land was federally protected wetland connected by streams and bayous to the Gulf of Mexico and, therefore, that the property could not be developed without a permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Such permits typically require that developers protect and preserve other wetlands to compensate for those they are permitted to fill and destroy.
The charges allege that in spite of additional notice of the prohibition against filling and draining wetlands without authorization, HCL, principally through its minority owner /general contractor, hired an excavation contractor to trench, drain and fill large portions of the property to lower the water table and thus to destroy the wetland that would otherwise have been an impediment to commercial development. In pleading guilty, HCL admitted that it knowingly ditched, drained and filled wetlands at multiple locations on the Hancock County property without having obtained a permit from the Army Corps of Engineers as required under the Clean Water Act.
It is a felony under the Clean Water Act for any person knowingly to discharge pollutants into waters of the United States, including wetlands, without a permit. A corporation convicted of this offense is subject to a penalty of not more than $500,000 per count.
HCL agreed and was ordered to pay to the federal government a total penalty of $1 million ($500,000 for each of the two counts). HCL also agreed and was ordered by the court to restore and preserve the damaged wetlands as provided in separate agreements HCL reached with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and a citizen group, the Gulf Restoration Network. The agreements require HCL to re-grade and then re-plant, with appropriate native vegetation, the wetland area it excavated and filled and donate approximately 272 acres of the southwest quadrant of its property to the Land Trust for the Mississippi Coastal Plain to be preserved in perpetuity. HCL is also required to fund its management and maintenance, to pay $100,000 toward the litigation costs of the Gulf Restoratio
"Look, Judge, if we've got to pay for justice around here, I will pay for justice. I've paid other judges to try to get justice, pay you, too, if that's what is necessary."
That statement, made by attorney Chokwe Lumumba to Leake County Circuit Judge Marcus D. Gordon on October 17, 2001 got Lumumba in trouble -- big trouble.
Gordon cited Lumumba for contempt, fined him $500 and ordered him to serve three days in the county jail. According to an Associated Press story written at the time, Lumumba was referring to the fine itself, meaning that he would happily pay the fine if it meant justice for his client at the time, Henry Payton.
A 2003 tribunal recommended a public reprimand for Lumumba but the bar sought a harsher punishment.
"Instead, the Mississippi Bar wanted Lumumba suspended from the practice of law for an unspecified period of time. The Mississippi Bar stated that the length of suspension would be left up to this Court to determine," records show.
The court ruled that in addition to the fines he'd been ordered to pay, a six-month suspension of Lumumba's law license would be appropriate. Lumumba appealed the decision to the Mississippi State Supreme court on the grounds that his speech was protected by the First Amendment. Both courts disagreed.
However, the appellate court found in August 2003: "Lumumba's behavior was done in the presence of the court and intended to embarrass or prevent orderly administration of justice. Further, it was both disrespectful to the judge and disruptive to court proceedings. We cannot fathom any situation that would warrant such behavior. This Court finds that the statements made toward the judge about how he can better get along with lawyers in the future, about the judge's "henchmen," about being proud to be thrown out of the courtroom, and about paying the judge for justice were made to embarrass the court or impede the administration of justice. This Court finds that the statements go far beyond zealous representation of one's client, and makes a mockery of the court and its proceedings."
In 2005, the state Supreme Court declined to hear Lumumba's appeal. The state high court reinstated Lumumba to the bar in 2007 with an 8 to 1 decision.
Here's a list of Chokwe Lumumba's top campaign donors* this year, over the past two reporting cycles:
Barry W. Howard ($10,000) - Madison, Miss. Howard has given to at least one Democratic candidate for Mississippi statewide office, Gary Anderson, who ran for insurance commissioner in 2007.
Chokwe Lumumba ($6,000) - Jackson, Miss. Lumumba, the sitting Democratic Ward 2 councilman, gave himself money on two separate occasions. One sum totaled $3,000; the other $1,500. Lumumba is an attorney who has represented a number of high-profile clients and has a long and sometimes controversial history in civil rights and law.
Adekuule Adekuubi ($5,000) -- Mississippi The name that shows up on the most recent campaign finance report appears to be a misspelling of Adekunle Adekunbi, vice president of business development for Garrett Enterprises Consolidated, the company owned by Jackson developer Socrates Garrett.
John Burge ($3,000) - N/A
Burk-Kleinpeter Inc. ($2,000) -- Baton Rouge, La. Its website states: "Burk-Kleinpeter, Inc. opened its Jackson office in 2012 to serve the expanding Jackson area market as well as to provide services to the Mississippi Dept. of Transportation and other state agencies." With Mississippi offices Ocean Springs and Jackson eight total branches in Louisiana and Alabama Baton Rouge-based engineering consulting firm, Burk-Kleinpeter is an equal-opportunity political donor. On the federal level, the firm has given to the election campaigns of Sen. David Vitter and former Rep. William Jefferson, convicted on federal bribery charges in 2009. The firm, has also been in state races where the company operates, giving $29,700 total since 1998. In Mississippi, Burk-Kleinpeter or its principals, William Burk and George Kleinpeter, has in recent years contributed to Gov. Phil Bryant, Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves
Dr. Demitri Marshall ($2,000) - Port Gibson, Miss. In 2011, a Houston grand jury indicted Marshall for nonpayment of child support and related medical expenses a child who resides in Texas. The one-count indictment charged Marshall with failing to pay more than $10,000 in child support and medical expenses ordered by a Harris County family district court dating back to 1997.
Moore's Auto Sales ($1,300) - Jackson, Miss. Moore's bills itself as "the finest luxury vehicles in metro Jackson." A search of the Mississippi secretary of state's website yielded no results for the business.
New England Contractors LLC ($1,300) - Jackson, Miss. Formerly known as East Parke Properties is listed as a general contractor based in Jackson. Abby G. Robinson, the registered agent for the company, secretary of state records show.
*Note: Lumumba also collected $300 on May 7, 2013 from a person listed only as "Anonymous Donor." Gerald McWorter and Judith Green whose addresses are listed as "PayPal" gave $1,000 and $500, respectively.
Read more about Councilman Lumumba: jfp.ms/chokwelumumba.
Last night's mayoral forum/debate/"job interview" seemed to have been born of a desire to shake things up, to breathe new life into the stodgy, old question-and-answer-from-a-fixed-podium-style debates of yore. For that effort in thinking out of the box, the organizers at Leadership Jackson probably deserve a cookie.
A small cookie, made of shortbread and perhaps with a bit of mint flavor given the clumsy execution of the event. It began with a Jeopardy-style quiz game designed to test the candidates' knowledge of such trivial matters as how many city council members does it take to sue the mayor and how many bond referendums voters have rejected in the past 30 years (answers: one and zero, respectively)
Organizers didn't have a clear understanding of how much time each of the candidates was supposed to have to answer, or even how long the thing was supposed to last. At the end, one moderator invited closing remarks while another moderator (who works with one of the campaigns) insisted on continuing to ask questions.
However bizarre, there were a few takeaways from the forum that featured Democratic runoff candidates Councilman Chokwe Lumumba and businessman Jonathan Lee--both of whom seemed agitated by the debate format--and an independent named Richard Williams who goes by "Chip."
First, and most strikingly, is that Councilman Lumumba needs to get up to speed on Jackson Public Schools. While Lumumba aced questions relating to the city council, where he stumbled was on questions about the composition of JPS' budget. Although the city has no hand in running the schools, the mayor does appoint members to the JPS Board of Trustees, and the city provides local funding for schools through property taxes.
Second, there isn't much room between Lee and Lumumba when it comes to some personnel issues, mainly whether department heads should be required to live in the city of Jackson. Lumumba added that because his administration would "encourage" property owners to live inside the city, having his department heads live in the city would set a good example.
Third, Lee is staying on message that he is a "second-generation operator of a small business." In the weeks leading up to the Democratic primary on May 7, news that the company Lee's father started was being sued by several companies came to light. When the Jackson Free Press asked Lee about the default judgments during an interview at JFP HQ, Lee said that the problems occurred after he stepped away from running the company as its president although questions remained about what he knew and when. Since Lee went on to finish in first place in the election, Lee clearly thinks the ensuing maelstrom didn't hurt his chances, so he's staying on message.
Fourth, judging by the crowd response, Lumumba's supporters are a little more fired up than Lee's polite backers. In winning the primary, Lee arguably had the most cohesive coalition of young African Americans and whites, pockets of west Jacksonians--the Koinonia Crowd, I call them because of Lee's ...
At a press conference near City Hall, Democratic mayoral candidate Jonathan Lee and a handful of supporters announced a key endorsement from State Representative Credell Calhoun, who represents Mississippi's 68th district here in Jackson.
Lee also received endorsements from his pastor at Anderson United Methodist Church Joe May and New Jerusalem Church Pastor Duane Pickett. Pickett said it was important to him that Lee believes in the resurrection of Jesus Christ because "Jackson needs a resurrection."
That statement was an obvious swipe at Chokwe Lumumba, who despite being baptized four different times in four different churches has made statements in the past about not being sure about the story of Christ's resurrection, a story integral to the Christian faith.
After hearing from the speakers, Lee took to the podium and after a brief statement took three questions from the assembled media.
The first question was about Lee's support, both financial and at the ballot box, from the white community. The reporter asked if Lee was trying to distance himself from his supporters. The candidate answered no, and asked the reporter to look at the numbers, which he said shows he had a wide range of support from voters all over the city.
As we pointed out in a story in Wednesday's JFP, which you can read here, we noted that the bulk of Lee's support indeed came from Jackson's white community in Wards 1 and 7.
Lee added that he was "very proud" of the way his campaign has been run.
When pressed on the issue, event organizer Othor Cain said we would move past that line of questioning and asked if there was anyone else who wanted to talk about something else.
The second question Lee fielded was whether or not he was disappointed by former candidate Regina Quinn's decision to endorse Lumumba. Lee, who had already mentioned Quinn as a future role model for his daughter, said he was a little bit disappointed because he thought he had laid out a plan she could get behind, but that he would move forward without her support.
The third question was whether or not the preachers' comments were implying that Lumumba was not a "true Christian." Lee vehemently denied that, saying the pastors were only there to talk about him, and not his opponent.
The press conference was set to take place on the lawn in front of City Hall, but about 10 minutes before the set 11 a.m. start time, security and City Clerk Brenda Pree emerged from the building and told Cain and Lee's campaign manager Tyrone Hendrix they would have to move the event 150 feet from the building, because absentee and early voting was taking place inside City Hall.
WAPT reported today on what is probably the most coveted mayoral endorsement, saying that Regina Quinn has endorsed Chokwe Lumumba for mayor. In a less significant announcement, Frank Bluntson has endorsed Jonathan Lee.
During the campaign, Quinn was angry at Lee for spreading around that she had voted Republican. This is what she told the JFP via email about it:
That’s ridiculous. Whoever put that information into “databases” is playing the same “old political games” they always play during the waning days of a campaign season. I assure you that if you ask for backup documentation to support that allegation, you will receive none. I have been the most transparent candidate in this race, Ms. Ladd. I told the voters that I filed for bankruptcy and successfully completed the bankruptcy plan to turn my financial life around. Likewise, if I were a Republican, I would proudly say so. Voters should not trust any candidate who would lie to them about who they are. I understand that Mr. Othor Cain has dishonored himself by starting these abject lies. After you satisfy yourself that I am telling the truth just like I did when I was attacked in this fashion the first time, I would suggest that you research the party affiliation of the candidate that Mr. Cain is supporting (Lee) because this allegation is obviously a diversion from his own candidate. Let me be clear, I am and have always been a Democrat and voted consistently that way, albeit I can and do work with people of all persuasions.
The JFP blogged here that Quinn's name did surface once in a voting database for a Republican vote, which she says was an error.
We're not saying, however, that Quinn endorsed Lumumba because she was angry at Lee. Her staff wrote this on her Facebook page May 10:
Regina is reviewing each candidate's written plan, has met with both, and continue to monitor supporter's opinions. She expects to announce soon whether she will endorse Lumumba, Lee, or neither first to you her supporters.
Quinn came in fourth in the primary, drawing more vote than most political watchers expected and seems to have a strong voting base among women.
UPDATE: Quinn campaign manager Aaron Banks told us tonight:
Hey Donna, When Regina makes her final decision we will get statement to you. We did not inform 16 of any endorsement and it is sad to say that they posted a story without verifying it with our campaign. But we will inform you first once her mind is made up thanks.
The budget for Jonathan Lee's campaign to become next mayor of Jackson has officially topped $400,000 since the start of 2013.
In a report filed Tuesday, May 14, 2013, with the City Clerk's office, the treasurer for Jonathan Lee's political action committee "Friends of Jonathan Lee" says the Lee campaign raised $66,459 since April 11, putting his calendar year-to-date total at $401,019.12.
The report says Lee has also spent $372, 762.08 total, and $65,815.41 of it since April 11, 2013.
The report, which you can read here, shows that Lee received several large donations in the past month, including a $2,500 donation from Guy H. White of Ridgeland and a $2,000 donation from Emmerson Asset Management, LLC. He also received $1,000 donations from The District Land Development Company, Bennchmark Construction Corp., Fondren Place Apartments LLC, Integrated Management Services and private citizens Susan McNease of Jackson, Steven Speights of Jackson, Samuel Lane of Jackson and Deshun Martin of Jackson.
Lee's opponent in the May 21 runoff, Ward 2 Councilman Chokwe Lumumba, also filed his report on time (yay!). His report indicates that his campaign has just topped the $100,000-mark, year-to-date, with $31,957 of that coming after April 11, 2013.
Lumumba has received large contributions in the past month, including a $5,000 from Adekuule Adekuubi (trust me, we are digging trying to figure out who these people are), $2,000 from Burk-Kleinpeter Inc. (an engineering company out of Baton Rouge, La.), $1,500 from himself, $1,300 from New England Contractors LLC (a Jackson business) and $1,000 donations from Adam Shakoor of Detroit, Mich., Herbert Irvin of Jackson, Mississippi Boys Hoops Inc. of Jackson, attorney John Walker of Jackson, J&J Wholesale of Clinton and attorney Winston Thompson of Jackson.
Ward 4 City Council hopeful De'Keither Stamps also filed a report, which you can read here.
Stamps report says he received a total of $4,940 between April 28 and May 11, 2013, from himself, coffee roastery engineer Nikdra Ford and Honeysucker and Honeysucker Inc. He spent $1,931 at A2Z Printing, and split the rest of his spending between Wal Mart, Raceway, Spaceage Marketing and Printing and Poll Watchers. He reports $277 cash-on-hand.
See, it's not hard to follow the law.
During the run-up to the Democratic primary, the main whisper campaign, coming from several candidates, seemed to be about who had—gasp!—voted Republican in the past. Now, it's over who is Christian enough to be mayor.
Mayoral candidate Chokwe Lumumba is pounding the same drum that President Barack Obama had to beat in order to protect his Christian credentials. Since Lumumba came in second in Jackson Democratic primary for mayor, the whispers from opponents about his not being Christian—and perhaps presumably Muslim?—have gotten louder and more insistent.
Lumumba responded to critics on his Facebook himself (or at least someone did on his behalf), writing:
I am a man who respects all people and their right to believe as they choose regarding faith. However, I AM a CHRISTIAN. In fact, I have ALWAYS BEEN A CHRISTIAN. I was raised in Church. My mother was a member of a Christian Women's Association in Detroit to combat prejudice in the Church. When I moved to Mississippi in the late 80s, I continued to attend Church. My late wife Nubia Lumumba, was a member of the Church Choir until her death in 2003. My children have been raised Christian. My daughter, Rukia Lumumba worked in the children's church and the church nursery throughout middle school and high school. My son often gives the message (sermon) at his current Church. GOD and Christianity is a part of who I am. #I AM A CHRISTIAN MAN, WITH AN AFRICAN NAME. #electlumumbamayor for Mayor on May 21st. #together we can make #jacksonrise
Today, the Association of Alternative Newsmedia released a statement joining other journalism organizations in protesting the U.S. Department of Justice's over-reaching subpoena of The Associated Press' phone records. The JFP joins other media organizations who have signed onto this letter by the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press. It reads in part:
The scope of this action calls into question the very integrity of Department of Justice policies toward the press and its ability to balance, on its own, its police powers against the First Amendment rights of the news media and the public’s interest in reporting on all manner of government conduct, including matters touching on national security which lie at the heart of this case.
Under state law, a violation of any candidate's campaign-finance disclosure requirement could result in the state withholding certification of nomination, withholding salary of office, and a misdemeanor conviction that carries up to six months in jail and a fine of up to $3,000.
But the city hasn't seemed interested in enforcing those election rules. Mayoral candidate Chokwe Lumumba was a month late on the 2012 report, and filed his pre-primary election report, due Tuesday, April 30, on Election Day, May 7.
Similarly, the Jackson 20/20 PAC, which is strongly backing Jonathan Lee, did not file its pre-primary report until the day before primary day, six days late.
Lumumba and the 20/20 PAC will get a shot at redemption tomorrow, when reports covering any money raised or spent by candidates from April 28 through May 11 are due by 5 p.m.
After that, the 48-hour reports should be pouring in.
Ward 2 Councilman-elect Melvin Priester, Jr. , Ward 7 Councilwoman Margaret Barrett-Simon and incumbent Mayor Harvey Johnson Jr. all filed 48-hour reports last week, but they were the only ones.
Under Mississippi Sunshine Laws, candidates seeking the nomination of a party in a municipal election must file a report with the city clerk if they receive any donations of $200 or more after the tenth day, but more than 48 hours before 12:01 a.m. on the day of the election.
In English, that means that if a candidate gets a single contribution of more than $200 (which both mayoral candidates in the runoff have received consistently) then they would have to notify the City Clerk's office within 48 hours of receiving the donation.
We're hopeful all this information will be readily available, and we're ready to update the site as we receive them. Another special thanks to the Jackson City Clerk's office, which has been professional and helpful from the start of this process back in January.
Starting today, you can celebrate American Craft Beer Week with beer enthusiasts all over the country. Look for great events at local Jackson hot spots all week! I'm kicking the week off by enjoying a beer from the Bruery called Trade Winds (a belgian style tripel brewed with rice and thai basil) while writing an article on sushi for the next instalment of Boom Jackson. Seems appropriate! You can unlock a special badge on Untappd (a social beer app) this week by checking into any American craft beer from your favorite micro brewery this week. Cheers!
As a native Mississippian, who has known Choke Lumumba for more than thirty five years, there is no doubt, Chokwe Lumumba is the people's candidate. He has proven himself in the city of Jackson, the citizens knows him, and the work he has done for the people. Under his learedship, Jackson, will become one of the most progressive cities in America. I hope to see him create a committee, to work with the Mississippi Legislature, to create legislaltion to help decrease the prison population, not only to help people, stay out of prison, but legislation to help people get out of prison, for sentences that fell under the Truth and Sentencing Laws, whereby, defendants were faced with mandatory minumum sentences. There are many more Mandatory minumum laws, that need to be revisted. Jackson is on the move, when people come out to vote, on Tuesday, May 21, 2013, you will have on your mind, YOU ARE NOT GOING TO LET NOBODY TUTN YOU AROUND, Jackson is on the move, be a part of rebuilding Jackson, Mississippi, by the PEOPLE"S CANDIDATE, Chokwe Lumumba.
Former Jackson Chamber of Commerce President Jonathan Lee and Ward 2 Councilman Chokwe Lumumba will square off in two debates this week, ahead of the May 21 runoff election that will put one of the two men into the Jackson mayors office.
The first is set for 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday at the Old Capitol Inn, and will not be broadcast on television. The second is Friday, May 17, downtown at the Mississippi College School of Law at 7 p.m.
It will be interesting to see the two go at it - mainly because they've stayed away from each other in past forums and debates, both focusing their efforts on their own message and their mutual disappointment with the administration of current mayor Harvey Johnson Jr.
Parents for Public Schools of Jackson is also hosting a mayoral candidate forum on Sunday, May 19 from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. It will be held in the Community Room in the Jackson Medical Mall, and each candidate will present his educational platform and vision for public schools in the City of Jackson and answer questions from the audience. Parents, high school students and interested community members are encouraged to attend.