Candidate Lester Taylor - 2013

James Gerrish

I have previously expressed several of my opinions about Lester Taylor in talking about his blocking me from asking questions on his Facebook page after I tried to get him to clarify the vague goals he had posted in March of 2013. The question I asked was also deleted. Those goals were:

Campaign Slogan: It's Time for a Change

Lester's goals in his own words: "There’s a lot of work ahead to spread our message of reducing crime, saving our taxpayers’ money, attracting businesses to our city to create jobs and investing in education so that our children have a brighter future."

Very vague; no specifics given.

Goals from Lester's Web site were not much better:

Spur job creation by bringing in new businesses and revitalizing parts of downtown.
Hold the line on taxes by being smarter about how the city spends our tax dollars.
Create new revenue streams to balance the budget without raising taxes.
Reduce crime by developing new community partnerships.

Less vague, but still no solid solutions mentioned.

If you click on "Examine the Issues" on Lester's site, and then click on "Education" you get the typical Democrat's solutions to our failing schools - throw more money at it. Whose money? Why taxpayer money, of course. "Lester will fight to make sure East Orange students get their fair share of state funding so that we can close the achievement and opportunity gaps." We already spend more than $20,000 dollars per student in East Orange, increasing the amount every year since I've lived here, and yet the test scores continue to decline each time the school funding increases.


If you "read between the lines" of each of Lester's goals, you find that same solution in different words- "Lester’s plan (for increasing jobs) includes using city, state and federal opportunities to provide incentives to new businesses." Remove the politico-speak and that translates to "spend more of the taxpayer's money from local sources (property taxes), state sources (sales taxes) and federal sources (income taxes)."


When discussing the issue of taxes, Lester never once suggests lowering our taxes. His only solutions, as expressed on his Web Site, are to "get our money's worth" out of the taxes we currently pay. He will do this by "saving taxpayers' money and making our city more affordable for everyone" (which sounds a lot like the Democrat/Socialist plan to redistribute our wealth). He promises to "hold the line" on taxes, but not to actually reduce them. His last paragraph negates everything he said about holding the line because he wants to "invest in our schools, build parks and green spaces, and provide our children with better recreational opportunities." The word "invest" is Democrat-code for "spend more taxpayer money." Yes, I know one of his slogans is "create new revenue streams to balance the budget without raising taxes" but that's a slogan, not a plan. He does not explain how he will create these "revenue streams."


On the issue of "Public Safety", Lester holds completely to the official Democrat "talking points" which means he supports everything Democrats say and do about enacting gun control laws that have no chance of being enforced. He says of himself: "Lester also strongly supports our state and national leaders who are fighting for tougher gun control laws to keep dangerous weapons that have no place in our communities off of our streets and out of the hands of criminals. Lester will take every step necessary to make sure our schools and our neighborhoods are free from senseless gun violence." I have never met a violent gun, but there are plenty of violent people in our neighborhoods and schools whose violence is expressed with words, hands, fists, and any object they can find to throw, smack, whack... well, you get the idea. Democrats want to legislate good behavior in people, a failed policy that dates back to the time Moses delivered the 10 commandments to the Israelites, including "Thou shall not murder."


Lester's background as a lawyer is touted as good experience for his becoming mayor, but I see it as one of his major flaws as a candidate for the position- he sees the problems of the city only from his own viewpoint and only "filtered" through his lawyer's background. You can hear that background expressed in his recorded speeches from the recent debate held at Cicely Tyson School on 5/15/13. On Question 3, for example, he asks the audience how many of them feel safe about walking home from Cicely Tyson School at 8:00 PM, and without waiting for a response or a show of hands, he assumes automatically that everyone feels unsafe, which draws a murmur ... more of a growl... of disapproval from the audience as he continues talking down to them while they continue to murmur their disapproval. He obviously hears them, but he does not listen to them. That's the flaw. You can find other examples for yourself.

If his being a lawyer is such a problem for me in seeing that as a good background for him becoming mayor, imagine my dismay when I heard him admit to everyone (Question 9) that he plans to continue working at his law firm while holding down the position of mayor if he is elected. The salary of $140,000 that the mayor receives is NOT a part time salary. He says he can do both jobs as full time jobs, but I, for one, am not interested in hiring him under those conditions.

5/31/13 In Thursday's East Orange Record (5/30/13), the editor chose to endorse Lester Taylor for mayor. Since the "news" paper is the mouthpiece of the Essex County Democrats, that's like asking Lester Taylor himself who he should vote for. In the opinion, editor wrote: "(Lester) Taylor has the connection to make change not only possible but probable. He has already been endorsed by the East Orange Democratic Committee, Essex County Democratic Committee, U.S. Rep. Donald Payne Jr., Assembly Speaker Sheila Oliver, Sen. Nia Gill, Assemblyman Tom Giblin and several labor unions, including the Essex County Building Trades Council, New Jersey State Laborer’s International and Essex/West Hudson Labor Council. These ties will help Taylor promote construction of the affordable housing and neighborhood improvements he has promised."

I can add only one snort: "At whose expense?" There can be only one answer to that: "At your expense." You, the taxpayers, will be funding these expensive projects Lester has promised. Your money will go to the labor unions mentioned in the editorial, with kickbacks for everyone who lines up with the Democratic machine in Essex County and East Orange. That includes construction companies who will be chosen carefully for their politics rather than their competence.

06/01/13 Kevin Taylor's Statement on PolitickerNJ

Follow Lester Taylor's term as Mayor HERE

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