Hope and Shame

If as to prove that most local Democrats do in fact make up the gang that couldn’t shoot straight, Annapolis Democrats lost their Mayoral nominee tonight:

Zina C. Pierre, a virtual unknown in Annapolis politics whose primary victory this week put her on track to become the city’s first African-American mayor, dropped out of the race Friday evening in the wake of revelations of personal financial problems.

Pierre was besieged with questions about the foreclosure of her Bowie home and several state tax liens.

“Zina Pierre has decided that for personal reasons she will withdraw from the race for the city of Annapolis,” said her spokeswoman, Michael Matthews, who declined to comment further.

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According to city code, the Annapolis Democratic Central Committee must choose a replacement nominee by early October. Nick Berry, the chair, said the group will move “expeditiously” to appoint a nominee.

Go figure…a Clinton Administration figure with character issues. Who’d have thunk it?

To his credit, our sometimes nemesis Paul Foer broke the story this afternoon:

Zina Celestine Pierre, the recent upset winner in the Democratic Primary for Mayor, has a lengthy history of legal troubles that have repeatedly landed her in court for issues such as mortgage foreclosure, tax lien and a credit union judgment.

According to state records easily available online, Zina C. Pierre is listed as a defendant in 18 civil lawsuits and 3 traffic cases in Prince Georges County, the earliest being 1990 and the most recent two being filed in March of 2009. In all cases she is the defendant.
Five of the civil lawsuits are listed as still active and involve a mortgage foreclosure, a credit union judgment against her (over $6,000), a State of Maryland tax lien ($653), another approximate $6,000 judgment against her and what looks like her company, and another lien. These are just the active and open lawsuits. Among those listed as closed are lawsuits involving Hecht’s and Jaguar Land Rover of Annapolis.
I am completely flabbergasted that a mayoral primary that seemed to have lasted almost a year managed to not see any reporting, any campaigning, or any discussion of this issue until three days after the Democratic primary.Especially when you consider all of these records were easily accessible via computer.

Looks like Annapolis Democrats were incredibly under served, not just by the other six Democrats who ran for Mayor, but also by local media. The Sun and The Capital managed to completely fumble this story and run no stories about Pierre’s background until after her withdrawal from the race. Given how much ink was (rightfully) given to the Sam Shropshire sexual assault allegations, you would have thought that somebody in these journalistic institutions would have thought to sit at the computer and do this basic research.

Score one for the blogosphere, but what a complete embarrassment for the city of Annapolis…


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