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Why David Tandy Won’t Be Louisville’s Mayor

July 31st, 2009 · 16 Comments

Yesterday we linked to the LEO Weekly story about Metro Council Majority Caucus Director Kenya McGruder. She “directed” Barack Obama’s non-existent campaign in Kentucky and was brought to Louisville by Carolyn Tandy and her husband, now-Metro Council President David Tandy, during Eleanor Jordan’s congressional race in 2000. They’ve been joined at the hip ever since.

LEO wrote about McGruder receiving a mysterious five-day suspension from the personnel committee instead of getting fired.

But what’d she do that was so mysterious and unworthy of being mentioned in public? Well, it’s not so much what she did.

Multiple Metro Councilcritters tell us that the Tandys were using McGruder to babysit their children while she was supposed to be conducting official Metro Council business. Steve Henry-style babysitting. Among other things. And they let her keep her job.

We emailed Tandy’s Legislative Aide, Rob Haynes, requesting a comment about this corrupt little situation. We were first promised a written statement within an hour, but Tandy wanted to talk on the phone about it. Fortunately, we don’t have much time today (personal reasons/obligations) and again requested a statement. Note: Normally, we’d be happy to record a telephone conversation and would jump at the chance.

Here’s what I received, two hours later:

I am only aware of one instance when David’s daughter, Kennedy, was with Kenya at City Hall. I was told that Kenya’s timesheet reflected that she was off the clock.

If there are other instances, that would be news to me.

Our Metro Council sources stand by their statements about McGruder. They have no reason to be dishonest and all three of them appear to genuinely like the Caucus Director.

Should be noted that I like David Tandy and think he would make a great legislator and great mayor — if he’d just take a risk and maybe stop walking on eggshells. He has a great personality, he’s genuinely nice, he has a beautiful family and hasn’t tried to get rich off the public yet.

But dragging things out and playing coy with this McGruder situation does nothing but lead us (and probably our readers) to believe he could be abusing his position as an elected official and taking advantage of taxpayers. Primarily because it doesn’t take several hours to formulate a denial if you’re not trying to cover something up.

We pressed again for an explanation and here’s what we received three hours later:

With regard to personnel matters involving Metro Government employees, I am prohibited from discussing those matters publicly.

As for any rumors that suggest the reasons for Ms. McGruder being suspended are due to her attending to my daughter while on government time, those rumors are false.

Dueling statements? It’s a little more than rumor when actual council members share the info. And Rob Haynes’ earlier statement admits that McGruder was indeed babysitting at City Hall, saying he “was told” she was off the clock.

Creative wording? Tandy avoided answering our question about whether or not McGruder had been a babysitter on government time. We never asked, not once, if that was why she was suspended.

Here’s what we asked:


Care to provide an on-the-record comment about the Kenya McGruder situation?

Here’s what I know: Multiple Metro Council members tell me that Kenya was babysitting the Tandy children while she was supposed to be conducting Caucus business. Specifically, she was used as a personal babysitter by Metro Council President David Tandy and his wife, Carolyn (also a government employee), paid for with our tax dollars. Steve Henry-style babysitting.

Comment? Denial? Non-denial?

Make of it what you will, ladies. We’re not buying it. Where there’s smoke there’s fire.

P.S. Haynes told me he needed extra time to explain everything, that it took too long to write everything out. And then that’s what we got. Again, something doesn’t smell quite right and it’s not us.

Tags: Corruption · Embarrassing · Flashback · Frustration · Wasted Money

16 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Steve Magruder (I, not D or R) // Jul 31, 2009 at 4:46 pm

    Even if Tandy is able to wiggle out of this mess, there’s the issue of what he did at last night’s council meeting to consider the bridges authority resolution. Thanks to Tandy, we don’t have official roll call votes on what is one of the most important matters to ever pass by this council.

  • 2 Ed Springston // Jul 31, 2009 at 7:37 pm

    Nothing new here and from what I understand by Council members is a frequenst occurrence including former Council member Ellen Call as well.

    This is just one instance against Tandy. There are more……

    As far as Rob Haynes is concerned he is spinning as usual. Tandy or Haynes has never followed through on anything asked of them and promised to some of us. Good work Jake

  • 3 chris thieneman // Jul 31, 2009 at 8:40 pm

    Maybe when we voted for merger the voters gave the council the right to use city employees for baby-sitting services.
    Sound crazy?? That seems to be Tandy’s answer to everything.
    Hey Mr Tandy we look forward to the day you decide to run for mayor.

  • 4 Steve Magruder (I, not D or R) // Jul 31, 2009 at 9:09 pm

    For once, I like what Thieneman has to say. :)

  • 5 voter // Aug 1, 2009 at 12:26 am

    The best thing Tandy could do is just be HONEST!….He’s convinced that the best method is giving bullshit answers like that!…..Just say ,”OK I left my kid with her for an hour or so , it was an emergency or schedule conflict that came up” or whatever? The denials are usually BS. HE’s a TYPICAL Politician, Taking hours to contemplate an answer to something like this , surely makes him look suspect, and he’s overthinking it trying to “cover his ass”…..That’s what we need!….another Mayor that can’t just tell the Truth?

  • 6 Ed Springston // Aug 1, 2009 at 3:48 am

    Remember tandy follows the Abramson rules in politics. Don’t be honest, spin everything, and cheerlead. Wonder if he likes skirts too?

  • 7 Paul Hosse // Aug 1, 2009 at 9:49 am

    Tandy is a lawyer. He has also been around politics a long time. He knows better than this. I pulling for Seum to step up to the plate and announce.

    Paul Hosse
    Another Opinion

  • 8 jake // Aug 1, 2009 at 10:34 am

    Springston: That’s why you’ll continue to struggle to be heard. Because you do ridiculous crap like suggest that Jerry Abramson likes to cross-dress. There’s no reason you couldn’t have just put together an argument – no matter how nasty (just like I do) – and left the homophobia out.

    I dislike the man as much as you – if not more – and don’t find the need to crack homophobic jokes because I think he’s gay. He could be. Who knows? I just know that no respectable gay person I know would get it on with that mess.

    That said – Not all gay people like to cross-dress. (There are tons of straight guys who like to cross-dress.) And if they did, what’s wrong with what they like to do so long as it’s not harming anybody?

    If you can’t attack someone for what they’ve done in their political life, why resort to attacking their personal life? Especially if they’ve never been a hypocrite when it comes to their personal life and have never tried to do something while in-office that hurts someone in a manner in which you’re attempting to damage them?

    You kill your argument when you pull ridiculous homophobia out of your hat. You force people like me to reconsider what you’re saying.

  • 9 Annex Regent // Aug 1, 2009 at 10:58 am

    Tandy is nice enough a guy, but his aversion to making decisions is almost terminal. Louisville doesn’t need a backpatting go alonger following the reign of Mayor McCheese. Louisville government needs an enema.

  • 10 Ed Springston // Aug 1, 2009 at 3:58 pm

    lmao Jake. Struggle to be heard? I do fine thanks.

    I do not have homophobia at all. As a matter of fact I have many friends who are gay and lesbian and know me better.

    I do have problems with people who are in leadership positions lying about who they are like Abramson does. It does go to the question of what else is he lying about and those things are being found out now.

    And yep I am part of the reason why he gets questioned today. As are you and other bloggers who do not stand idly by.

    The reference to Tandy liking to wear skirts was a reference to him not having any balls and following daddy Abramson around like a puppy dog.

    Get over your one man single issue self promoting agenda and relax a bit. We all know you are gay you have not stayed in the closet and ran from it. Congratulations. I really do not care about your bedroom or sexyual habits. That is yor private choice not mine.

    Many of us actually support many of the things the gay community fights for everyday.


  • 11 jake // Aug 1, 2009 at 4:40 pm

    Yeah, struggle to be heard. And struggle to be taken seriously. All tens of people who listen to your paid radio program where you fly off the bat or randomly make shit up because the entire world is out to get you.

    If you don’t harbor homophobia, the do not drop homophobic attacks on people. The excuse of knowing gay people won’t cut it. Nor will the excuse of suggesting that wearing a skirt means someone isn’t a man.

    I didn’t once mention myself or sexual orientation in my response to you.

    If you want to talk about agenda… I’ll talk about agenda. You won’t like it. Nor will Mr. Fendley.

    Take your bullshit elsewhere.

  • 12 Ed Springston // Aug 1, 2009 at 7:02 pm

    lmao. Ah Jake I only mentioned you being gay because you make it a prominent part of your responses and accused me of being homophobic. I do not care one way or the other. What one does in the privacy of their home is their business I generally always respect that.

    And frankly you can check out the demographics for the radio show at WKJK they are public record. You will see that the demographics are thousands not tens of people.

    Interesting you would state “….. you fly off the bat or randomly make shit up because the entire world is out to get you.”

    Curious where your proof is I made shit up or said the world was out to get me. I frankly get a kick out of attacks like this without merit. Talk about making stuff up? lol.

    I still fail to see the homophobic attack you are accusing me of as I have never attacked homophobia.

    You are the one who questioned in previous articles that Tandy does not appear to have balls, a sentiment I agree with by the way, so I would assume if he has no balls then that would be girly. In which case girls wear skirts. Easy connection.

    Have fun lol

  • 13 jake // Aug 1, 2009 at 11:08 pm

    Actually, Ed, I stated that what you said was homophobic. Went on to explain that you can’t make loaded, homophobic claims and expect to be taken seriously.

    World out to get you: Every time something happens, you’re complaining about Metro Government being out to get you, stalking you, being unfair, yadda yadda.

    Making shit up: When you flew off the bat a couple weeks ago about Brad Cummings and Jerry Abramson on your radio show. You just cold made all that shit up. You literally made up facts about Cummings never having done anything about Abramson. You had zero clue what you were talking about and in your hatred of Jerry, you grew delusional and assumed that because Cummings wasn’t personally stabbing Jerry in the eye, he clearly had never done anything or spoken up about him.

    That’s plenty of proof.

    Interesting that you avoided addressing Dan Fendley, the guy behind all the Katie King attack mailers and the guy ghost writing all of your briefs in your hunt against Jim King. (His daddy spends all day reading and searching for Jim/Katie stories on Page One from Oldham County Government computers)

    I’ve also done a little digging of my own and have discovered that there’s a little situation involving you and a 2008 circuit court case that makes just about everything you’ve said about Katie King’s mortgage at minimum questionable and at most absolutely ridiculous. But I’m not interested in attacking you personally.

    You’re still trying to justify your homophobic statement and are further and further slipping down the homophobic slope. You’re no longer welcome to comment here or on The ‘Ville Voice without comment moderation. I have a zero tolerance policy for homophobia – no matter how veiled it is.

  • 14 Just me // Aug 2, 2009 at 10:41 am

    I don’t live in Louisville (thus am not familiar with ES), but it was getting pretty redundant reading Ed ‘plug’ his radio show on PageOne/VilleVoice.

    Just sayin’…

  • 15 James Moore // Aug 2, 2009 at 1:02 pm

    Gentlemen, please! Time to repeat an oldie-but-still-goodie joke that’s somehow pertinent to your thread – interjected here merely to lighten the proceedings:

    Two guys are changing in a locker room, and one notices that his buddy is wearing women’s underwear.

    “Good Lord,” the guy asks, “How long have you been wearing those?”

    “Ever since my wife found ‘em in the glove box of my car,” his friend replied.

  • 16 jake // Aug 2, 2009 at 1:15 pm

    Some more information on the Tandy-McGruder scandal:

    Metro Council members tell me that Kenya was reprimanded during the Obama campaign for campaigning on city time and using city computers to send out email blasts and to do random politicking . But she took an I’ll-do-what-I-want approach and David Tandy defended her.

    Councilcritters at the time requested proof of what Caucus staff did during their work day and asked for examples. Tony Hyatt, since he does his job, was able to produce everything necessary. But McGruder wasn’t able to produce anything and didn’t bother to create so much as a list.

    After the 2008 General Election, McGruder paraded around City Hall telling folks that she’d secured a position in the Obama Administration (he didn’t come close to carrying Kentucky – like he was gonna bring HER on – ha) and that she’d do whatever she wanted until that point. That job never materialized and she’s since — according to council people — been a bit of a sore thumb who just cold doesn’t do her job. She allegedly only works with David Tandy and doesn’t waste her time with silly things like, you know, working with the council.

    On a number of occasions throughout the past several months, all kinds of people have informed me that they’ve seen McGruder with Tandy’s children during the work day. Taking them to the YMCA, going shopping and meandering about City Hall. And within the caucus personnel committee (or whatever it’s called), there is plenty of documentation and gossip to be found. So I encourage members of the media to dig in, lest they believe the absolute horse crap David Tandy and his friend/aide Rob Haynes tried to force down our throats on Friday.