Reminiscing about Sam and Clay


I was watching a replay of Thursday's Tulsa Council meeting, where former Councilor (now Chief Administrative Officer) Sam Roop and former Councilor (now Mayoral Chief of Staff) Clay Bird spoke to prevent the passage of an ethics ordinance. Their line is one we've become accustomed to hear from Mayor Bill LaFortune's administration: "We're supportive of the concept, but this isn't the right time." And the right time never seems to come.

Seeing Sam and Clay in the same camera shot reminded me of a lunch that happened sometime in 2001. Former Street Commissioner (and my colleague from two sales tax fights) Jim Hewgley set up a lunch at St. Louis Bread on 15th Street so that I could meet zoning attorney Bill LaFortune, who was getting ready to run for Mayor. I had expected that it would be just me, Bill, and Jim, but Bill was accompanied by Councilors Sam Roop, Clay Bird, and Randi Miller. The three Councilors wanted me to know how Bill would work with the Republicans on the City Council to achieve the kind of reforms that Mayor Savage had routinely blocked. They were excited that Bill would be a Mayor who would treat the Council with respect, as a co-equal branch of government.

Today -- well, Bill has certainly treated Sam and Clay well, giving them high-paying jobs in his administration. Their job is to appear before the Council and tell them that the Mayor won't be cooperating with them on the reforms they are trying to achieve. Meanwhile, I hear that Councilors have a very hard time getting a meeting with the Mayor.

Sam and Clay seem pretty happy with the outcome, even if it doesn't match the picture they painted for me over lunch at St. Louis Bread.

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This page contains a single entry by Michael Bates published on June 4, 2005 11:37 PM.

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