Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

ANOTHER SIDE TO MAYORAL HOPEFULS; Questionnaire Steps Far Away from the Candidates' Political Positions

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

ANOTHER SIDE TO MAYORAL HOPEFULS; Questionnaire Steps Far Away from the Candidates' Political Positions

Article excerpt


Audrey Moran identifies with sharpshooter Annie Oakley.

Alvin Brown wanted to grow up to be a farmer.

Mike Hogan had an Uncle Slick, who drove a city bus.

Warren Lee thinks he can sing, but only in the shower.

And as a basketball-playing kid, Rick Mullaney would have liked to have been taller. But hey - he's got a full head of hair, for which he's grown ever more thankful as he gets older.

Those are nuggets gleaned from questionnaires the Times-Union gave Jacksonville mayoral candidates, part of an attempt to find out what they're like beyond policy statements and campaign promises (candidate Steve Irvine did not respond).

We asked about favorite movies and books, the things they'd change about themselves, the things that scare them, the people who influenced them - that kind of thing.

After going through the questionnaires, one thing's for sure: There's not a quirky personality in the bunch - or at least they weren't willing to 'fess up to that in public.

But maybe that's the kind of politician we want: After all, it's not like Jacksonville is one of those artsy granola places up in Vermont or Oregon where they've never even heard of good barbecue (which is, not coincidentally, the favorite restaurant offerings of Brown and Mullaney).

Make of it what you will, but it's interesting to see who each candidate picks when asked: Who would play you in a movie of your life? Hogan said Jimmy Stewart. Moran said Sigourney Weaver ("her characters are tough, funny and passionate"). Brown sees Bill Cosby. Mullaney figures it would be Ray Romano. Lee said Will Smith ("maybe then it would sell").


The most offbeat tastes seem to come from Moran: She lists the critically acclaimed, irreverent "Modern Family" as her favorite TV show, and Chevy Chase in "Vacation" as her favorite movie. "The Prophet" is her favorite book, and she turns to Carole King for tunes. Steep roller coasters scare her, and the Metro Diner is her favorite restaurant.

Growing up, she wanted to be a nurse - until a teacher told her she could be a doctor. Former Mayor Ed Austin was her biggest influence in her adult life. And here's something you might not know: She worked as a bartender to put herself through law school.

And the Annie Oakley thing? "She overcame obstacles with determination and strength."


Hogan had a couple of picks some might consider offbeat: The late Floyd Cramer, pianist extraordinaire, is his favorite musician. And he likes to eat at the Blue Bamboo, the eclectic Asian fusion restaurant.

Other than that, his tastes tend to be more straightforward. His favorite TV show? "The Andy Griffith Show" (and "NCIS"). A favorite book? The Bible. Movie? "Gladiator."

Homer Lindsey Jr., the late First Baptist pastor, was his biggest influence as an adult. Robert E. Lee was the historical figure he identifies with. …

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