What happened????
Posted: 03 April 2013 06:29 AM   [ Ignore ]
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First, contrats to the winners in yesterday’s election.  We hope ALL elected officials will take their oath seriously, spend the time and effort to judiciously make the decisions that are best for Manhattan, and govern wisely.  Some would suggest the election was a win for the liberal/left side of the political spectrum.  That is NOT the case.  This was NOT a mandate for ATA… or LGBT… or SOS… or the Fieldhouse project.  If it were, we would have seen the most outspoken activist for those causes elected and she was not.  If it were, we would have seen a much wider margin between the liberal candidates and the more conservative candidates.  This was an election that indicated a desire to leave the devisive rehetoric that has inundated our political system from D.C. to Topeka, to Manhattan.  We are tired of the imposition of religious idealogy… or anti-religious idealogy… into local politics.  We saw the most political conservative and the most political liberal candidates not be elected.  Instead, we saw one voice of common sense from the past commission re-elected.  Rich displayed the ethics and integrity, while serving his past term, that we should demand from ALL those seated in public office.  Ms. McCulloh and Ms. Reddi, while may lean towards the left, have not been “noisy” advocates of the devisive issues.  In today’s antagonistic political clime, that is commendable.

Manhattan has some extremely difficult issues before her governing body.  What can we actually afford, when our current debt is so high?  How high are the people willing to see property taxes escalate?  We have infrastructure issues that need addressed BEFORE and INSTEAD OF legislating our own moral values from the dais at 11th & Poyntz.  Commissioners, conduct the business of this community and leave your special interest idealogy to be discussed in coffee shops and card clubs.

The closeness of this vote indicated just how evenly split our community is.  As this commission takes office, it is NOT their charge to split us further.  It IS their charge to pull us closer together as a community, get our fiscal house in order, and protect our infrastructure that our citizens are dependant on.

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Posted: 03 April 2013 07:22 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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So, in 2011 the outcome was a mandate and this time it’s not?

“If it were [a mandate], we would have seen a much wider margin . . . ”  The margin between the top vote getter and the 6th place finisher was about the same as the margin was in 2011. 

“If it were, we would have seen the outspoken activist for those causes elected . . . ”  True, Nuss was not elected (assuming that’s who you mean), but she finished 4th behind three other candidates who shared similar views on issues, while the 5th, 6h, and 7th place finishers expressed opposite views and were not successful.

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Posted: 03 April 2013 07:32 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Larry,
I’m glad you are so fond of Rich.  He will be making most of the decisions.

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Posted: 03 April 2013 07:44 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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i tend to agree with kathy.  this was a movement to the left. rich had strong chamber membership support.  and it showed as the evening unfolded.  had he not, debbie would have won the third seat, which she held after advanced voting.

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Posted: 03 April 2013 07:56 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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I’ll be interested to see what happens when the commission reorganizes and selects a mayor.  If the commission follows its usual tradition, Matta is in line to be the next mayor.  But, Matta will (presumably) be in a voting minority.  When Sherow was up for mayor and was going to be in the voting minority, I recall there was interest in bypassing Sherow in favor of a mayor who would be in the voting majority.  So, I’ll be interested in seeing whether Matta declines being mayor.

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Posted: 03 April 2013 07:59 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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of course, i tried to do that saying to jim, bruce and jayme that i didn’t represent the majority and should not be mayor.  they’d have none of it.  i doubt this group of liberals will either, even though they do have the authority.

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Posted: 03 April 2013 08:03 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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Why does the mayor have to represent the majority? He has no real power either way. Besides, until a vote takes place, we don’t know who will be in the majority.

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Posted: 03 April 2013 08:05 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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The mayor doesn’t have to represent the majority.  My poorly made point was that when the conservatives took the majority in 2011, it was a great idea to have a mayor who represented the majority.  Will that still be a great idea when the conservatives are not the majority?

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Posted: 03 April 2013 08:08 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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the mayor does have power and limited by real authority.  he and the city manager set the agenda.  he’s the media face of town government.  it can be a position with ‘weight.’  our ties to ft. riley grew very close with mine to general vince brooks.  don’t ever think being mayor is unimportant.  that would be an error.

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Posted: 03 April 2013 08:09 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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Don’t think I said that 2011 was a mandate.  When controversial issues are front and center, the commisson majority may take a “bully” mentality.  We had a commission that pushed through an number of issues that were considered “liberal”.  (I highly dislike the tagging of liberal or conservative to issues, but that’s what the politcial areana has deemed necessary.)  As two commissioners expressed opposite views, the majority sat there with smirks on their faces knowing they had the votes necessary.  The pendelum swung in 2011 so those same bully tactics could be utilized by the “other side”.  Mayor Sherow, and sometimes Commissioner Jankovich, could do nothing as previously passes ordinaces and policies were rescinded.  Yes, one commissioner in particular, used the excuse that he was merely doing the bidding of those who elected him to office.  No matter how devisive the issue, he would even toss in some comments about the President or D.C. politicis. 

I do believe we will see Jankovich be the “voice of reason” between Matta/Butler on one side and McCulloh/Reddi on the other.  Reddi was quite careful in her candidate forum comments, however, in suggesting she would look at each issue and determine, in her analysis, what is best for the community.  I know there are some who are fully convinced she will side with McCulloh on all issue and be anti-Matta/Butler.  We went through a commission where one commissioner consistently and continually sat back and said “I echo what Mayor/Commissioner Snead says”.  Let’s all hope that Commissioner-elect Reddi will speak her own mind and not merely “echo” another commissioner… or special interest group dialogue.

Never fear, Tuesday evenings will still offer some excellent viewing.  I just hope we hear intelligent and open dialogue… not witness a WWE style fracus.

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Posted: 03 April 2013 08:14 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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having set through eight debates with them, i would be astonished if the two women disagree on anything material.  and you’re right that rich will be the swing vote.  not a fun place to be down there at the end of the bench.

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Posted: 03 April 2013 08:42 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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I wasn’t trying to say the mayor doesn’t have an important role—just saying the mayor doesn’t have to represent the commission’s voting majority.

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Posted: 03 April 2013 08:50 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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The mayor certainly has some influence, but not within the confines of a commission vote.  He has one vote, just as do the other members. He has little or no influence on the outcome of votes, unless the majority already agrees with him, but that is coincidental not causal.

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Posted: 03 April 2013 11:29 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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Bob, I appreciate your candor and analysis of the results.  To me, it is a clear indication that this community has become slightly more progressive, but possibly because the far right has been very divisive in their state wide leadership positions. Moderates are needed and I may be a progressive leaning one, but to me it’s a signal that the Brownback and Kobach problem will drag down the GOP ticket in 2014.  Debbie Nuss deserves a lot of respect, if she is the “far left”, she was much closer to winning than the “far right”.

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Posted: 03 April 2013 12:06 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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debbie is not a blank slat like many candidates in politics.  she’s made a stand on many issues over time and that reality doesn’t always play well. people tend to remember, believe it from one who knows.  i would have liked to have seen her on the dais, but it wasn’t to be last night.  actually, i know this for a fact, debbie is far more conservative on fiscal issues than people believe.  the same was true of jayme morris-hardeman, a woman i grew to respect greatly during my term. 

but good luck to you, aaron.  you’ll have your hands full as well.

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