Shelley Midura of the New Orleans City Council has asked our Distict Attorney Eddie Jordan to step down. I’m going to reproduce it here in full because her staff sent it to me directly (along with many others I’m sure) so I can claim as direct a line as the mainstream media:
July 12, 2007
1340 Poydras Street
New Orleans, LA 70112
Dear Mr. Jordan:
I am writing to you today to respectfully request that you resign from the office of Orleans Parish District Attorney.
I have no doubts about your intentions or your dedication or your character. By all accounts you are a fine man. But the job of District Attorney is an admittedly difficult one with heavy responsibility and requires more than most fine men are capable of. After the events of the last 48 hours, which have eroded the public’s confidence in your ability to carry out the responsibilities of the District Attorney, I am asking that you resign from office. An elected official’s legitimacy and moral authority to govern is derived from the consent of the governed. I no longer believe you have the consent and support from the public required to perform your duties adequately.
I do not know that there is any excuse for dropping charges against a quintuple murderer without a thorough exhaustion of all possibilities to prevent such a thing from happening. Months ago you and Superintendent Riley pledged to the City Council several reforms and improvements in your lines of communication to ensure that lack of coordination between your offices would no longer lead to dropped cases against those who pose serious threats to our public safety. It has become all too clear that you have been unable to hold up your end of this bargain. Mr. Jordan, you must know as well as any of your fellow New Orleanians the great urgency our city feels in combating the violent crime problem. We have lost the room for these kinds of error. I thank you for your service and your efforts as District Attorney, yet I maintain my request on behalf of my constituents that you resign your office as soon as possible.
cc: Mayor C. Ray Nagin
New Orleans City Council
Midura has no authority over Jordan. As far as I know, Jordan answers only to the voters. Therefore Midura is exceeding her authority here. She’s sticking her neck out, taking a risk. She may pay a price for it. So… is she merely pandering to her constituents, or is this an exercise of true leadership? I tend to think it’s the latter. Big props to Midura for saying what needs to be said. I’m not in her district, but she’s representin’ for me.