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Smoke and Mirrors

Delay, not necessarily denial.  That’s the attitude of proponents of a more strict smoking ban in Marion County.  The measure, along with two amendments, failed to garner enough support to pass. The arguments were pretty standard; supporters argued public health, opponents argued property rights.  Because the measure was tabled, it can be brought back with a simple majority.

I seriously doubt it would pass if it came back.  Some supporters were trying to blame Mayor Greg Ballard for the ordinance not passing, saying he threatened a veto.  Those people should spend more time at city hall and less time in front of their computers.  Anyone who had been following this issue knows everyone on the Council pretty much had their minds made up before tonight’s meeting.

The measure only had 13 supporters, Councilors Dane Mahern, Doris Minton-McNeil and Monroe Gray all abstained and the one Councilor who was absent, Marilyn Pfisterer was absent and she, by all indications, is in the “no” column.  The only way to get more “yes” votes is to add more exemptions, something opposed by the true believers.

I honestly think the anti-smoking crowd would be better off focusing on tobacco cessation and getting people to simply quit.  I’d be more than happy to help them by writing and voicing the commercials.   For now, however, the ban has about as much chance passing the full council as the local cigar lounge does going smoke free.

There is no public outcry for a total ban.  And even in places where there is a total ban, it wasn’t the public that asked for it, it was the activist crowd that pushed the agenda.

Maybe it’s just best if  Indianapolis stayed where it is and we let the current compromise exist as is.

I’ve attached a montage of interviews from tonight’s Council meeting below.  They are, in order, Bill Smythe of Claude and Annies, Duke Oliver, Tim Fuller of Smoke Free Indy and Kent Smith.

smoking montage

  • John Howard

    I don't believe Doris M-M abstained. She wasn't there, was she? Or did she arrive after rollcall?

  • Indiana_Barrister

    She sent a note saying she would have abstained had she been there.

  • IndyRacer57

    Why not just ban the sale of tobacco products in Marion County or does money talk louder then health issue that the anti smoking crowd brings up? Mommy and daddy let the anti smokers down tonight.

  • pogden297

    IndyRacer57, I'm pretty sure the Council has no authority to ban the selling of tobacco products in Marion County.

    I don't know what is wrong with the current compromise. People seem happy with it.

  • Think Again

    Well, Paul, IO'm not happy with itl. I know many who aren't. But this is the way democracy works. The measure didn't win last night. So be it.

    I had to laugh at Abdul's comment about Mrs. M-M: she sent a freaking note? Indicating she'd have abstained if she were there? That's fantastic. That district gets a written non-committal from a 9-week absentee…Nine weeks and counting. Pitiful.

    Why did she even bother? A note to say she wouldn't take a side?

    That about sums it up for her, huh? “If I were there I'd not have taken a side.”

    You want ot know the most-telling indictment of h er tenure? Our favorite Apologist For All Things Center Twp. is not making excuses for her on this blog. If she had a ghost's chance of surviving, that defense would be here, in print.

  • John Howard

    I wonder if Patrice has re-established residency yet…

  • wilson46201

    Ms. M-M is from Wayne Township, not Center Township. Save your gratuitous ad hominem cracks for topics you know something about…

  • Rico

    Maybe she arrived after last call.

  • http://twitter.com/IndyStudent Matthew Stone

    A simple mistake in the township location doesn't magically invalidate the legitimate criticisms TA bought up. Those in her district should be outraged that their representative has the nerve to not attend the meeting.

  • IndyErnie

    “Save your gratuitous ad hominem cracks for topics you know something about…”

    Why should TA do what you won't, Wilson?

  • Dave

    Now, on to more pressing, important stuff…

    Smoke & Mirrors could likewise be a perfect description for the lopsided drafting of the Wishard referendum; a prospective threat to taxpayer health.

    Was there balanced input & editing, from a committee of proponents & opponents, in the drafting of such proposals? Wouldn't pitching a far smaller prospective “investment,” to private sector investors, require significant information & disclosure under SEC guidelines? Who is protecting taxpayers, caps, referenda, our representatives?

    Mr. Moldthan of the Indianapolis Taxpayers group (check out: http://www.advanceindiana.blogspot.com), suggests that by voting “no” on the Wishard referendum, citizens can protect themselves & help proponents keep a no new taxes pledge; while encouraging the hospital to go forward with its building plans, without the additional security that proponents claim they don't “need.” All of this begs the question, why the effort & expense of an unnecessary referendum?

  • John Howard

    You shouldn't use fancy Latin phrases if you don't understand their meaning.

    You don't even appear to understand the difference between townships and council districts, nor the fact Patrice was ousted from District 15 for not living in the district, not based on what township he lived in.

    I will admit to not knowing exactly how the 15th boundaries line up with the townships, but it's irrelevant. Much as you are, little boy. (There you go, THAT is a true 'ad hominem,' included just for illustrative purposes of course)

  • Dave

    John Elrod encourages Marion County residents to “VOTE NO” on the Wishard referenda, in a guest column published in today's Advance Indiana blog: http://www.advanceindiana.blogspot.com

  • wilson46201

    U.S. Senator Richard Lugar (R-Indiana) strongly urges Marion County residents to “VOTE YES” on the Wishard referendum as noted in today's Howey Report: http://www.howeypolitics.com/2009/10/27/lugar-s

  • Fact Checker

    Mitch Daniels' term as governor will be over before Indiana gets a chance to opt out of the public option…..under the current plan. That makes him irrelevant to that issue. The current plan has no “opt in”.

  • Jerry

    If your favorite bar allows smoking, and you don't like smoke, maybe it shouldn't be your favorite bar?

  • Dave

    It's hardly a surprise or newsworthy, that the DC establishment would support the expansion of government, pretending to be in business; be it health care, auto, banking, insurance, etc.

    Our senior senator left Marion County & Indiana, many years ago, for a bureaucratic sabbatical in Washington DeCeipt. Statists can forgive him for becoming a product of his environment, while others may choose to remember him as a man of the people while he was HERE. These seats belong to THE PEOPLE, who are in desperate need of representation just now.

    More, government expansion; is not the answer, it's the problem.

  • Rico

    Lugar has been in office far too long and no longer has a clue what's good for the citizens of Indiana and its capital city.

  • Fact Checker

    As a lifelong Democrat, I prefer Lugar's voting record to Evan Bayh's voting record. Bayh is much too right wing.

  • Dave

    John Elrod encourages Marion County residents to “VOTE NO” on the Wishard referenda, in a guest column published in today's Advance Indiana blog: http://www.advanceindiana.blogspot.com

  • wilson46201

    U.S. Senator Richard Lugar (R-Indiana) strongly urges Marion County residents to “VOTE YES” on the Wishard referendum as noted in today's Howey Report: http://www.howeypolitics.com/2009/10/27/lugar-s

  • Fact Checker

    Mitch Daniels' term as governor will be over before Indiana gets a chance to opt out of the public option…..under the current plan. That makes him irrelevant to that issue. The current plan has no “opt in”.

  • Jerry

    If your favorite bar allows smoking, and you don't like smoke, maybe it shouldn't be your favorite bar?

  • Dave

    It's hardly a surprise or newsworthy, that the DC establishment would support the expansion of government, pretending to be in business; be it health care, auto, banking, insurance, etc.

    Our senior senator left Marion County & Indiana, many years ago, for a bureaucratic sabbatical in Washington DeCeipt. Statists can forgive him for becoming a product of his environment, while others may choose to remember him as a man of the people while he was HERE. These seats belong to THE PEOPLE, who are in desperate need of representation just now.

    More, government expansion; is not the answer, it's the problem.

  • Rico

    Lugar has been in office far too long and no longer has a clue what's good for the citizens of Indiana and its capital city.

  • Fact Checker

    As a lifelong Democrat, I prefer Lugar's voting record to Evan Bayh's voting record. Bayh is much too right wing.