by Max Brantley
No surprise. Steele's main opponent in a four-way race, Joe Smith, is Hays' top administrator and Smith has been negotiator with city employees. Police figure an endorsement — and a Steele win — would pay dividends against the status quo of a city that has been strapped.
I appreciate police and the tough jobs they do. But, as I've said before, Fraternal Order of Police chapters are notoriously tone deaf politically and the opposite of progressive, particularly given that they are labor unions. A FOP endorsement is usually a reason to look for a different candidate.
The FOP statement:
North Little Rock - The North Little Rock Fraternal Order of Police is proud to endorse Representative Tracy Steele for Mayor. After extensive research of all the candidates, we voted overwhelmingly to endorse Steele.
“We support Tracy because he believes in making public safety a priority for the residents of North Little Rock. We need a strong leader in City Hall, and Tracy is that leader,”
“Throughout Tracy’s time in the legislature, he has been a staunch supporter of public safety initiatives and brings a wealth of experience and leadership on public safety matters. He is a proven leader with a track record of accomplishments.”
“North Little Rock police officers believe that Tracy is the best man to make our neighborhoods a safe place to live and raise a family.”
“We look forward to working with Tracy on public safety issues as Mayor.”