One former Democratic mayor is on his way up:
The Senate easily confirmed San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro on Wednesday to head the Department of Housing and Urban Development, boosting the national profile of a Democrat with a compelling biography who’s considered a vice presidential contender in 2016.
The 71-26 vote makes the 39-year-old Castro one of the government’s highest-ranking Hispanics, a growing group of voters who lean solidly Democratic. His ascension comes two years after he got his first broad national exposure when President Barack Obama picked him to deliver the keynote address at the 2012 Democratic National Convention. Senator Ted Cruz voted against confirming Castro. Senator John Cornyn voted to support the confirmation, after publicly backing Castro during a Senate hearing last month.
And another former Democratic mayor is on his way down.
Former New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin was sentenced on Wednesday to 10 years in federal prison for corruption during the critical years of rebuilding after Hurricane Katrina devastated the city in 2005.
A jury in February found Nagin, a Democrat, guilty on charges including bribery, wire fraud, conspiracy, money laundering and tax evasion.
Nagin, 58, stirred national controversy with his erratic behavior after Katrina breached floodwalls and inundated New Orleans in 2005, killing at least 1,500 people and leaving tens of thousands homeless.
Citing Nagin's devotion to family and commitment to helping New Orleans, U.S. District Judge Helen Ginger Berrigan said a shorter prison term than that recommended under federal sentencing guidelines was warranted.
She ordered Nagin to turn himself in to begin serving his sentence by Sept. 8. With good behavior, and barring any appeals, Nagin could get out of prison after about 8-1/2 years.
Just a reminder that sometimes, regardless of party, there are good politicians, and bad ones. Julian Castro is definitely a rising star, as is his twin brother Joaquin. Ray Nagin, on the other hand, got caught red-handed. I hope to hear a lot about the former. The latter, not so much.