Analysis: Defeated Fillingame Campaign Pivots to Help Hancock GOP backed City Council Candidates

Monday a week ago the Hancock County GOP held a meeting at the home of a local member. The meeting was very well attended and it’s aftermath immediately caused a stir locally and by 8AM on Tuesday the 23rd Slabbed had already received the first reports of this extraordinary gathering and by close of business Wednesday Slabbed had heard directly from a couple of local GOP party members that were in attendance. Comments alluding to it were left on this website, culminating in this post from last week.

Fresh off working for Mayor Fillingame’s campaign, local political operative Rhonda Gamble was there at the meeting and it was her presentation that had tongues wagging. To understand what she was offering to the Wards 4, 5 and 6 GOP nominees for the Bay City Council let’s visit with a national story from last week which ran in the Wall Street Journal (subscription required):

How Alleged Russian Hacker Teamed Up With Florida GOP Operative ~ Alexandra Berzon and Rob Barry

Later, going through what the hacker sent as someone who “actually knows what some of these documents mean,” the GOP consultant said he “realized it was a lot more than even Guccifer knew that he had.”

The episode shows how the hacker’s activities extended to exposing Democrats’ get-out-the vote strategies in swing states and informing a Trump ally of hacked data during the national campaign.

DCCC documents sent to Mr. Nevins analyzed specific Florida districts, showing how many people were dependable Democratic voters, how many were likely Democratic voters but needed a nudge, how many were frequent voters but not committed, and how many were core Republican voters—the kind of data strategists use in planning ad buys and other tactics.

The Journal reviewed these documents as well as Democratic voter analyses also sent to Mr. Nevins about congressional districts in Kentucky, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia and West Virginia.

In Bay St Louis we are not talking about hacking or other cyber crimes. But the information the Fillingame campaign, via Ms. Gamble, shared at that meeting was exactly the kind of voter intel that costs time and money to develop in lists of what I’d term Chronic voters, Nudge Voters and “Don’t waste your time potential voters”. One source in attendance described the information being shared by the Fillingame campaign as super high quality. The same sources all indicated that it was also announced that Miss Gamble would henceforth be taking point for the GOP Candidate’s campaigns in the Wards 4, 5 and 6 races.

It has been mentioned a time or two over the past month here on Slabbed that the Mayor’s race was being fought on two fronts, first between the Mayoral candidates and then in the Council races as perceived Fillingame Administration friendly candidates qualified under the GOP banner in the majority of the various Wards against current council members that stood up to the Mayor’s profligate spending.

Wards 4 and 6 drew multiple GOP council candidates and that was the fly in the ointment.  In Ward 6, candidate Hunter Adam was persuaded to drop out of the GOP Council primary with the promise of a City job in a series of events that was very accurately documented by Solid Waste Enforcement Officer Tommy Kidd.

Ward 4 was not so easily resolved as newcomer Kyle Lewis has a professional career that would far exceed the kind of job the Mayor could promise him. The GOP primary in Ward 4 resulted in Larry Smith winning by one vote with about 120 total voters in that primary. Those were votes that could never vote on the Democrat side for Mayor and therein lies the beauty of the strategy of running Fillingame friendly council candidates on the GOP side without primary competition as everyone could vote in the Democrat Mayoral primary. This strategy ultimately did not work out well for Hizzoner.

The two front political battle using the opposing political party to run the Mayor’s political allies is a pretty sharp move in my opinion. But it also strongly implies that the same group of people control both parties in Hancock County, which is not a good thing IMHO. As for the supposed ideological differences between the parties that less aware partisans prattle away hours arguing about online, I see none of that here. This is all about who controls the sovereign power of the City, not ideological differences.

To those that have been watching closely, none of the above is big revelation but the old saying politics makes for strange bedfellows is a time tested old adage that certainly applies to the 2017 Bay Municipal elections. In a few days we’ll all find out who gets to reign supreme for the next four years.

52 thoughts on “Analysis: Defeated Fillingame Campaign Pivots to Help Hancock GOP backed City Council Candidates”

  1. While employed by the city, Buddy Zimmerman did nothing for Ward 5. When he announced he was running against Joey Boudin, I assumed that it was not for the position of councilman, but for a mayoral ally when the mayor was re-elected. Since plan A fell through, I see they have a plan B. When I state that Buddy did nothing for Ward 5, I simply mean that from a good source, when a work order was requested, it went into in infamous file 13. It is my firm belief that the citizens of Ward 5 remember the service they received from the city while he was “in charge”. Although the citizens of Ward 5 in the neighborhood of Buddy and Les had excellent service. This would continue if Buddy would be elected. We would have a Bobby Comperetta clone.

  2. Buddy was opening bids behind closed doors and golfing several days a week. This adds up to one thing, quid pro quo. He was a Les man all the way although he has recently shifted to Mike Favre as a long time friend. Mike has not confirmed this. Buddy worked against the councilmen in Wards 5 & 6 relentlessly enforcing Filingames disenfranchising of 5 & 6.

    Mr. Boudin with the help of all the council stopped the behind closed doors bidding process that worked out better for Buddy than it did for the taxpayers. His golf game has suffered for it. LOL.

  3. Party labels are less than useless in a local election. The local officials don’t vote on party issues like Abortion, Gun Rights, Immigration etc…They just make local ordinances and try to equitably fund needed city services.

    Dafodil Farms, Trolley’s, Natatoriums and other things of this nature are not needed for the services we require.

  4. I watch from the other side of the coast in disbelief. Same crap happening on both sides but nothing being reported on over here in Moss Point or Pascagoula. Chaos reigns. The good boy systems is intact. Moss Point is like sticking your hand in an aquarium full of paranihs. No matter who wins there is going to be a lot of skin defleshing. Oh Doug, Daddy Walker walks free and not so much as a peep. That is up with that. Inquiring minds want to know the deal that was paid in blood. Public record. You should publish that or at least the link.

    1. Maybe you know something the Federal Bureau of Prisons website doesn’t?

      GULFPORT, MS—Federal and state grand juries returned indictments this week following a joint investigation into the activities of the Mississippi Department of Marine Resources (DMR) and a $3 million grant issued to the city of D’Iberville, announced U.S. Attorney Gregory K. Davis, FBI Special Agent in Charge Daniel McMullen, Mississippi State Auditor Stacey Pickering, Second Circuit District Attorney Joel Smith, and Nineteenth Circuit District Attorney Tony Lawrence. The State Auditor’s Office also issued civil demands totaling more than $1 million.

      William W. Walker, 68, of Ocean Springs;

      Insert William W. Walker into the inmate search and the website indicates he hasn’t checked out yet…

      Register Number: 17779-043
      Age: 71
      Race: White
      Sex: Male
      Release Date: 11/26/2017
      Located At: RRM Montgomery

      Oh wait! In the custody of RRM Montgomery?

      RRM Montgomery

      A Residential Reentry Management (RRM) field office.

      I’m starting to think you got dat right about Daddy being on the loose!!!!

      Sending this out to all the crew!

  5. Question? Did Buddy Zimmerman get retirement first go round when working for the City? if so what happens now to that, and if not, if elected do these years add to the original ones and qualifies him now after 4 years? Please tell me why he is running? Isn’t Golf more important to him. Maybe he thinks he can get some perks from Hollywood being on the council to play golf?

  6. He retired without health insurance, city employees don’t keep it when they retire and it will increase his retirement percentage of his highest 3 years. Thats one reason, the other is Fillingame and Tommy Kidd promised him an easy victory over Boudin. He knocked on my neighbors door a few weeks ago and told her that him and Les were so close he can get anything done in ward 5. Last week he hit my other neighbors and said the same thing about Mike Farve. He trashed Boudin for not getting along with Les and being too rich. When I worked with him he said we should deanexx 5&6, raise taxes and trust Les. When he came to work he drank coffee and talked about fishing all day, he was useless.

    1. He didn’t knock on my door because he did not want to hear what I would have told him. He just handed my husband a political flier in the yard and left. Maybe someone should inform his supporters that driving in the wrong side of the street and hanging door fliers on mailboxes are against the law. But, look who supports him.

    2. I can speak for only 3 Ward 6ers…..we DO want to be County again.

      Begore Katrina, the pundits said court maneuverings would take years.
      Then Katrina, all those beautiful Fed dollars

    3. I speak for 3 of the Ward 6ers…we would love to untangle ourselves from the soap operesque BSL govt.
      Before Katrina, the courts would take years.
      Post K, someone got a whiff of a possible Costco or privatized jails or libraries or Condos on the Bayou, an upscale Trump property. While we were still waiting on a FEMA trailer, annexation pushed through…..dirty pool, in my book. BUT someone(s) stood to make big bucks and that is why the west side of 6 is barely 2 blocks in. And the Bay can’t even service our 2 block street. We were never paved after K, road is water-heaved, breaking up and dodging potholes is like the downhill slalom. 2nd is a house that has not been habitable since Aug 28, 2005. The thick briars and sumac are great for rats, snakes, ticks. If it was anywhere visible, it’d be long gone.
      Oh, and I noticed at our cando on stilts on 603 has vehicles there and more forming going on. Who would I call that might actually drive the 10 minutes and do a credible job. It is not grandfathered, so it is an illegal dwelling.
      Thanks for the rant. The County always mowed, cleaned ditches. Pothole? Call the dept, done. BSL cops aren’t even sure if we are BSL. And the FD, if we did have a fire, who would come? After so many yrs, forgive my attitude…..I fought Feds for 3 yrs every day after 05….I’m tired.

  7. I am totally appalled at yet another low in Bay St. Louis politics. Wards 4 & 6 should be ashamed. The two Rhonda’s need to go home & stay home until after the elections. Hens bobbing their heads around are only causing problems & headaches. I never thought anything could be worse than high school, then I moved to Ward 6. It’s to the point that I now just pray for Wednesday.

  8. The CCA events are turning into a political party. Friday’s event at the Bay marina had Jump Jump Josh and Lying Buddy for guests of honor. I heard Tommy Kidd arranged it but the CCA should have rejected. Buddy or Josh hasn’t been to any or sponsored anything until now. They should be ashamed. Joey and Lonnie has been evolved and active with the CCA long before they were elected. I’m letting my membership expire, it’s not about conservation anymore.

    1. The CCA hasn’t been about conservation for a long time Timmy. It was infiltrated years ago by wealthy anglers who control the agenda. There are still a few great men involved but their intentions are far overshadowed by the entitled pigs of the organization. And yes….we ALL know who they are.

      1. P. S. I think the true conservationists should start a new group and let the CCA continue partying and doing what they do. IMO, It wouldn’t take the locals long to see their true colors and shun them for the users they are. It is sad that the good stewards, who are working for the betterment of our resources, have been reduced to dealing with the likes of “entitled” trash like this.

        1. And don’t forget Commissioner Trapani claim to the conservation movement is the CCA. She has sense joint the Land Trust I am being told. Nice touch. Trapani is a Cure and Gollott lacky. At least she is more of a man than Harmon. Gollott castrated him as a right to be on the CMR. CCA is a political organization whose goal is to exitinguish the commercial fishing industry. They make no secrete of that. Seems contradictory that Cure andTrapany support the CCA. They would both be out of business if the CCA gets their way. Stupid is as stupid does.

        2. Charlene

          As I have mentioned before, my health is deteriorating rapidly with almost no hope. I will continue to fight against crooked government and the cronys which are associated with it to the best of my ability.

          You are correct about the “entitled trash.” That entitled trash runs deep into the RRRSM.

          1. Eye, I am sorry to hear about your health. If you don’t make it through this, we will meet on the other side and watch below as others continue the fight the battle against the thieves who steal from the Taxpayers. They can hide their lying, cheating, and stealing from the sheeple who drink the koolaide, but everyone will have to answer to THE MAN. I would not want to be in their shoes.

        3. I would be thrilled to be a part of any new conservation group. I think with a few truly committed people, we could do some good.
          I don’t have money, status or connections. I am a committed steward of what’s left of our unique home.
          Please let me know. Thank you.

  9. Timmy and Charlene I don’t know where you get your info about CCA., but you are both wrong. I am a charter member of the Bay chapter of CCA. I don’t know either of you. I don’t know if you have ever attend one of our meetings, but what I do know is that you do not know what you are talking about. CCA does not endorse candidates or parties. CCA did not sponsor the event for Josh at Bay Marina Friday night. CCA did start an event at Bay Marina called First Friday. Call Bob Castoro at 228-342-0975 to confirm my facts. He is the owner of Bay Marina.

  10. A lot of people confuse Buddy with Earnie. Buddy lied and bullshited his way through his job. Opening bids behind closed doors. How can a person making $50K a year buy the finest guns, fishing equipment and golf 3-4 days a week? The answer my friends is opening bids behind closed doors. Les encouraged it and he did it.

    George Williams is not on the Ballot, Tish is. Nuff said!

  11. Timmy and Charlene If you want the facts of what CCA stands for and what Bay chapter is all about you can contact me 228-263-1005. I will be glad to tell you what we do and what we have accomplished.

    1. Post it for all to see if you are so proud of the recent accomplishments Sir. All that I hear from the current members of what is going on are parties, drink, women, and more party. “Important” people who know more important people rubbing elbows and enjoying more drink….Where is the work coming in to play – if there is any of that these days?

  12. Timmy and Charlene I talked to Bob at Bay Marina today and no one has called him and no one has called me. I guess you people do not want to know the truth.You just want to post things that are false and not facts. I feel sorry for people like you.

    1. No need to feel sorry for us Sir, it is the marine resource that you need to feel sorry for. And you need to feel ashamed of all of the members (not all of the members) who are hiding within the CCA for their own selfish purpose and agendas. You people need to clean house….let me rephrase that….The charter members need to clean house.

  13. Point Park You need to get a grip. I don’t know where you get your info but you are misinformed. My phone number is posted give me a call and I will inform you also.

  14. No reason to go on the aggressive defensive David Wells. You might want to dig a little deeper into the CCA before being the point man for its defense. Are you aware of the Southern Angler’s Club and how they came about? Can you defend that Mrs. Trapani’s position is justified by her works at the CCA; because she darn sure used it? Since you are so persistent on the inner works of the CCA as being 100% legitimate conversation; can you post some figures that support your claim? Dollars spent on conservation versus dollars spent on political action groups and fishing tournaments? The CCA has been a major lobbying group for quite some time sir, it’s not news to anyone.
    Their most recent claim to fame in Mississippi is the speckled trout conservation program; which, if you have been involved over the last few years, you’ll remember that there was NO shortage in the speckled trout stock approximately 5 years ago, but, all of a sudden; it is an emergency that we reduce the catch quota and increase the size limit because guess what…….the estimates were wrong.
    P.S….I am a LIFETIME member of the CCA and it has not followed the direction of it’s original intent.

    1. Thank you Fishbait. My sentiments exactly. It has become a completely “Good Ole Boy” club for the “elite and wannabees”. Originally, the members truly worked hard for conservation of the resources; however, as time passed, specific individuals saw it as an opportunity to further their agenda….and many of the members are there to keep an eye on and sway voting for the commercial industry. You know that they say – keep your friends close and your enemies closer!
      Thanks again Fishbait. You understand the dynamics of this organization as it stands today. And btw, no offense to the “Legitimate” members who are only trying to conserve our marine resources.

  15. fishbait [small caps cause ur a small person] You might be a life member, but you are not an active member or you would know the answers to the questions you asked. My phone nr. is posted on this site. Give me a call and I will enlighten you about CCA, and your comments.

    1. Mr. Wells – No one needs enlightening about the CCA…EVERYONE knows its status and mostly entitled members today.
      I’m with Mr. Fishbait – put up or shut up. List some of the positive things it has accomplished RECENTLY compared to the original organization accomplishments for all to see since you KNOW IT ALL. Thank you.

    2. From the name calling in your opening statement, I can see that facts are not something you enjoy dealing with. Although, for a guy your age, that isn’t common, unless I’m confused about which David wells you are. Previously from waveland? Regardless of what you think about CCA, which if you only judge by the bay chapter may not be too bad, there are things going on that we both know aren’t in support of the CCA charter.
      That aside, you have made some harsh judgments on me without knowing anything about me and that is not a character trait that supports your boasting of charity, honesty and good will. Are you a lifetime member of CCA? By doing that one act alone, activism is achieved. Everything else is a bonus, so, let’s talk about aome of my bonuses: have held board positions, banquet committee positions, volunteered at countless events, meetings, etc, PLUS, up until recently have donated big ticket auction items for the banquet live auction….out of my pocket, with no expectation of repayment like many expect AND receive. It really pisses me off when someone personally attacks me without any knowledge of me whatsoever, not even my real name…shameful! I didn’t accuse you of being a good ole boy, a false prophet, etc, I simply asked have you looked into the CCA from an objective stance? Fishing and beer are great, evening cash prize Fishing tournaments are awesome, but do you really know where that banquet money goes? How about the dues? Instead of posting your phone number, post some of that information. I’m not gonna call you right now, because trying to talk to someone while upset is a bad idea, but you should expect a call from me so you can tell me all about what you want everyone to know about CCA. I would enjoy hearing your perspective.

  16. This post was absolutely spot on, prognosticator. Well done calling the races when you did. Should give everyone some valuable insight into what type of council will be taking over the helm soon. Will be fun to watch. I’m going to keep my popcorn handy.

    1. The council will be interesting – it took the current council about 3 years to really learn the job.

      I see Hoffman, Seal, Reed and Knoblock as the 4 that will take their statutory responsibilities to set a responsible budget and oversee the annual audit seriously.

      A politician bites the hand that feeds them at their own peril. That makes the other 3 wildcards as their handlers supported the Mayoral candidate that lost. That is its own post and I have some more analysis coming to show how things may shake out.

  17. Well I guess the push for Republicans to get elected worked except for poor old George in Ward 1.
    I am shocked that Lonnie and Joey lost. Those two with Mike Favre have really taken more of an interest of what is best for the Bay than the other Council Members. “A new day in the Bay”

  18. Keeping the budget down to the essentials at least until they get their feet wet should be a no brained with 5 conservative Republicans on board.
    The litmus test to their conservatism will be health benefits for themselves.
    Ward 1—shouldn’t need them. Gainfully employed as well as wife and may not be in them now as an incumbent.
    Ward 2– Gainfully employed attorney plus several other business interests. No need for taxpayers to insure him.
    Ward 3— Successful owner of a private business and long time minister of a successful
    church. No need for public assistance.
    Ward 4– Successful private business owner– ditto
    Ward 5—Don’t know about his source of income ?????
    Ward 6— Successful business owner–ditto
    At-large— successful business owner– ditto
    Remember Council is a part-time job. They won’t provide benefits for part time city employees.
    So at $6,000 a year in benefits Times 7 Councilmen=$42,000 a year times 4 years=
    $168,000 already saved by 5 votes from conservative Republicans on Council!
    That will can toward upgrading the Police Dept.
    The Bay is on it’s way!!!

  19. Yes, Lana this will be a true test to see if the “conservative” republicans will cut the budget and streamline the employees in each department.
    I hope they do the right thing. The city needs the money…

  20. For those interested, I called David Wells to be enlightened on the magnitude of good deeds they are doing over at the CCA. As you can imagine, I did not receive ANY answers to our questions or any opposition to the comments above, just the constant assurance that they are doing good things. I never called out the Bay Chapter, because overall I think they do as good or better than any other chapter, it’s the organization as a whole that is not fulfilling their mission. When asked what percent of their earnings go to CCA national, no answer. When asked how much they earned on their annual banquet, no answer, except a lot. When asked how much the local chapter got to keep, no answer. When asked what politicians the CCA supported, no answer. When asked how many lobbyists the CCA has on payroll, no answer. When asked what the CCA President makes, Mr. Wells said, maybe 100k….lol…not even close, it’s 250k++. While local guys like Mr Wells are so quick to defend organizations like CCA, it is out of pure passion for what they believe they are doing, which is not hard to imagine. Local chapters do a lot, but, imagine what they could do if all the money they earned stayed local, like other smaller conseconservation groups. He did have one answer though, that the previous Mississippi CCA President, Johnny Marquez, left them bankrupt, actually beyond bankrupt, but still didn’t agree that frivolous spending, good ole boy parties and tournaments, etc., had anything to do with it……i hope it gets better. Overall nice guy, just too eager to drink the koolaid.

    1. Well, thank you Mr. Fishbait for educating us. I really admire you for taking the time to call Mr. Wells & ask the questions civilly. This is one of the reasons I enjoy & support Slabbed.

    2. I just viewed a 2014 IRS 990 for what appears to be the Coastal Conservation Association “national mothership” located in Houston TX.

      Well…Never have I seen a non profit report 197 uncompensated directors. Maybe that explains why this non profit apparently has a need for thirteen paid officers and directors, each reported to be working 40 hours a week. Actually, that would be thirteen WELL PAID officers and directors, with the 2015 compensation of the lowest paid officer/director being just a few benjamins short of $100,000.

      The others report compensation up to $260,000 (Patrick Murray, President.) Four are reported to be compensated NORTH of $200,000.

      Herding cats…err…a board of over 200 members probably is hard work.
      200 board members, that seems like a large number.
      What is the right number of members for a non profit board?

      Here is one opinion (but your catch limit may vary!): What is the Right Size for Your Nonprofit’s Board? Published on March 24, 2014 Michael Wyland

      The simple answer is that most authors agree that a typical nonprofit board of directors should comprise not less than 8-9 members and not more than 11-14 members. Some authors focusing on healthcare organizations indicate a board size up to 19 members is acceptable, though not optimal.

  21. Rhonda G is now touting she is leading Josh, Larry and Buddy on a mission to upend Favres administration because she put them in office. A self proclaimed King Maker!

    She is a snowflake and can’t accept the election results.

    The longest steady check Rhonda G has gotten was when she went on the system.

    1. Rhonda O, Paula Findme Working F., Jerry Blow, Tommy Freeride Kidd, Keith Dolittle Marquar, Losing Les, Kiting Katy plus Candy “I’m your friend” Brick have and will thru the Three Puppets rattle Favre behind his back from day one

  22. The new council can start off by eliminating health insurance and retirement for part-time positions. The council is part-time also. And should not get paid when they miss meetings. That would show true consevitisim. And should be the first order of business.

    1. This should be a no brainer for the new majority (5-2) Republican Council.
      The Republican Party invested a lot of money, time, and effort into their elections, and I am sure, expect these results for their $$$$ and support!!

  23. It appears, at least at this point, that one of the most critical nominations new Mayor Mike Favre, will present to Council for ratification, is going to be the replacement of newly elected Councilman-at-Large, Gary Knoblock, as Chaurman of the City’s Planning and Zoning Commission.
    Protecting the investments that citizens have made to the City’s ad valorem tax base has to be paramount, and would be a slap in the face to those who have built, bought, and remodeled homes to that effort.
    The developmental philosophy of new Council members could become manifest right out of the gate.
    Between this and the School Board’s possible request for a millage increase, this new, “conservative” Republican Council will have the opportunity early on to show their true colors.
    Time and votes will tell.

  24. Politicians will be politicians…. I hope the push for conservative and Republican philosophy is carried out. Look at Washington D.C., the Republicans won’t even support their own president??? Why would BSL be any different??

    1. Outraged,
      We’ll see how many Councilmen vote to budget for taxpayer funded health insurance for their part time position. That will begin in July when they start formulating the budget for Fiscal year 2017-18.
      The lines in the sand will be drawn early on, as I said.

  25. Buddy has been in office less than two months and already missing meetings.
    It is Just an extension of his previous employment. He is a career city employee counting the days to get paid. Lying buddy said “Trust Me”. Lol time will tell.

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