After a majority of Cincinnati city council voted to send the idea of building a $6 million temporary jail back to the Law and Public Safety Committee Wednesday, council member Leslie Ghiz unloaded on her colleague John Cranley.
Ghiz, along with council member Jeff Berding, has floated the idea of building eight temporary jail structures as a way to eliminate the early release of prisoners. She was offended that five of her fellow council members declined to back her up with a vote that would have instructed acting city manager Dave Rager to begin negotiating with county officials the parameters of the jail proposal.
The county, through Sheriff Simon Leis and Prosecutor Joe Deters, has repeatedly said building the temporary jail structures is a bad idea and one they won't support.
While Ghiz was angry at all five council members who voted to send her idea back to committee, she was especially upset at Cranley's vote, which she said was politically motivated.
Cranley is running for Congress against Republican Steve Chabot.
"John is making a political decision to put this off until after the election is over," Ghiz said of Cranley. "He doesn't want to have to deal with the sheriff. His congressional race is far more important to him than the city.
"He did it for political reasons, and it makes me want to vomit."
Cranley explained his vote in Wednesday's council meeting, saying it makes no sense to instruct Rager to negotiate with a group of people who don't want to talk about a temporary jail. Cranley said the better approach is for elected officials from both governments to talk about it in an attempt to convince county officials that the idea is a good one.
Cranley said he supports the temporary jail.
"I don’t question her motivations," Cranley said of Ghiz. "I think she really wants to get this done. We just have a disagreement over how to get it done. But if the shriff isn't convinced, this will never get accomplished.
You can’t ask the administration to solve a political problem. This can only be solved by the city's elected officials reaching out to the county's elected officials, and figuring out a compromise. If we stopped criticizing each other, we’ll go a lot further."