Friday, February 10, 2012

Lori Davis: It is Time to Recall Matt Aitken

Dis. 1 Commissioner Matt Aitken
What say you now Matt Aitken?
Lori Davis Commentary

Friday, Feb. 10, 2012
Augusta, GA
By Lori Davis

In 2009, Matt Aitken was elected as the Commissioner for District One. It was quite an interesting race because Aitken is white, and the district is heavily black. No one thought that it could happen, but it did. Matt Aitken was elected in a run off against Bill Fennoy , the last black candidate standing. I can say personally that even though I knew who the Matt Aitken backers were, I thought maybe he could be his own man if elected, and think for himself. Maybe he could help to bridge the gap between the black and white commissioners. After all, he was a recovering drug addict who turned his life around and had involved himself heavily in prison ministries. But it looks like I was wrong.

Matt Aitken ran a stellar campaign where he easily crossed racial lines and kept to one short message,"We just want to move this city forward." He really had no other campaign mantra but this. Aitken claimed at the last Commission meeting just prior to the vote on the Tee Parking Deck Agreement, that he campaigned on getting the Tee Center and parking deck built and both up and running. He acted as if everyone knew where he stood on this issue during his campaign and there should be no surprise in the way he was going to vote over moving the city forward with an affirmative vote on the parking deck agreement.

Matt Aitken , oddly enough gave the last word prior to the roll call vote of all Commissioners on the Parking Deck this past Tuesday night, with the Mayor nodding his approval on every word he spoke. "We need to move this city forward," he said again. Several of our Augusta Today group who were in attendance had said if we heard these words one more time from Matt Aitken, we would get up and walk out. We kept our manners in check, and did not, even though Commissioner Lockett was rolling his eyes. I stopped myself from barfing. Then Aitken said that he trusts the Augusta leadership to do the right thing….Really? After today's revelation from your City Administer Fred Russell, on his interview with WRDW is Fred still trustworthy?

Did you really trust Fred Russell and Jim Plunkett as they lied before the Commission on Tuesday evening, and drew you in? I personally gave Matt Aitken a chance to call me and discuss all of this prior to Commission, but He did not. I could have filled him in and saved him from this embarrassment. I could have shown him that I was not divisive as he has called me.Too late now. Matt Aitken might not be able to pick himself up and I will personally ask for a recall vote with my Commissioner, Matt Aitken of District One. He just does not get it. Maybe now he does.***

Lori Davis

Related Story:
Matt Aitken: Like a Deer Caught in the Headlights

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