Back in the spring, St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay endorsed Hillary Clinton for the Democratic nomination. At the time, Slay’s endorsement was seen as a huge coup for Clinton, who was already facing a strong challenge from Barack Obama. Slay, as the Democratic mayor of a majority-African American city, has an effective political operation and sailed to re-election just a couple of years ago. But the paint’s peeling right about now. Following the uproar over the demotion of Fire Chief Sherman George, Slay is now facing an organized recall effort, and his opponents will be protesting inside and outside Hillary Clinton’s rally on Sunday at the Pageant. (h/t the always excellent PubDef) I have no idea how successful the recall effort will be (actually, I’ll believe it when I see it), but given the fact that the recall organizers are largely local African American leaders, and the fact that Slay, like the rest of Clinton’s host committee, is white, I can’t imagine Clinton’s team is too happy with the baggage Slay is bringing with his endorsement.
I thought it was a strange move for Slay to endorse Clinton rather than Obama, though I don’t know if it would have been enough to smooth over the Sherman George situation. Still, Obama might be glad he didn’t have to deal with this headache on his recent visit.
Update below the flip.
Per PubDef, Slay will not be appearing at Clinton’s small dollar Pageant fundraiser, so the protest is off. The recall group has a block of tickets, though, so if Slay shows up, they will make some noise. I suppose it’s a wash for Clinton; I’m sure Slay will still be appearing at some of the private fundraisers, while Clinton collects money from the block of people who bought tickets on the off chance that Slay makes an appearance anyway.