Wednesday, March 08, 2006


Clerk should step down


Kimberly Williamson Butler is acting like a lunatic.

The clerk of New Orleans' Criminal District Court is responsible for maintaining records for the court system and for overseeing elections. And yet Ms. Butler has shown no interest in and no capacity for doing either job well. On Monday, her self-involvement and her disregard for the law even landed her in jail.

She ought to resign as clerk now -- before she does any more damage to the justice system, the political system or the reputation of a wounded city.

And she could still get in the way of a fair, legitimate election April 22. That would be unconscionable -- especially because the election has already been delayed once. Getting ready for a major election after a devastating hurricane is a long, arduous task, but Ms. Butler presumably isn't getting much done during her stay in the clink.

Her antics aren't just putting the election and the criminal justice system at risk. She's also making a laughingstock of New Orleans. This farce needs to end.

Ms. Butler should quit her job, get out of the way and let competent officials carry out the public's business.

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