By Laurie Au
We saw it last year, with the absence of Councilwoman Barbara Marshall, the many deadlock votes of 4-4 in the City Council.
And we see it again this year after the recent death of Marshall, of colon cancer.
When Duke Bainum was elected as the City Council’s ninth and newest member, many political insiders wondered if he would be: independent, one of the Hannemann supporters or (as it seems) another Ann Kobayashi, whose seat he filled.
Kobayashi typically disagreed with Hannemann, who beat Bainum for mayor in 2004.
At the first City Council meeting this year in January, Bainum voted with the “anti-Hannemann” faction. (He sided with Councilman Romy Cachola to keep the rail transit route in Salt Lake.)
At today’s City Council meeting, he also sided with the dissidents attempting to override Hannemann’s veto of a bill that would have banned text messaging while driving. (It failed in a 4-4 vote.)
It could be possible to see more of these 4-4 votes until a successor to Marshall’s seat is elected in a Special Election ending April 23. And maybe then, we can finally determine who has the power in the City Council.