In Lakewood's Mayoral Race, a Battle of Two Bush League Shit-Talkers

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As yesterday's mayoral election approached in Lakewood, undecided voters could only be sure of one thing: The next mayor would really suck at insulting people. In the days leading up to the vote, residents were bombarded by leaflets from Mayor Tom George and Councilman Ed FitzGerald castigating each other in the most uninventive terms. FitzGerald accused George of making massive budget mistakes, allowing crime to run rampant in the western suburb, and harboring a secret plan to raise taxes by 33 percent after the election. George, in turn, accused FitzGerald of being a lying piece of shit (that's the condensed version), and leafleted homes with Halloween literature. (Symbolism: FitzGerald is scary. Get it?) FitzGerald naturally responded by accusing George of mudslinging, which, in the context of politics, is like accusing fried chicken of being greasy. It had all the fury of a rap battle between Polly Shore and Carrot Top, especially considering that both are Democrats. (The city's lone Republican, Ryan Patrick Demro -- who was elected to Council last term after residents mistakenly thought they were getting an Irish Democrat instead of a gay Republican -- was defeated in the primary.) On Monday, the Ohio Election Commission even ruled that FitzGerald had lied during the campaign, apparently fabricating his allegations of a budget mistake and the secret plot to raise taxes. (We tried calling the Election Commission Tuesday, but this being Ohio, no one was actually answering the phones on Election Day.) Either way, the ruling came too late for George to once again bomb residents with leaflets. Last night, FitzGerald's strategy of scaring people about crime and Making Stuff Up proved a winning recipe. He handily trounced the mayor. The moral of the story, boys and girls? It's never too early to start talking shit about your former friends. You never know when you might want to run for mayor. -- Pete Kotz

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