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The Scoop 8-12
Our mayor needs some competition
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Jimmy Bonner has exited the race for McMinnville mayor. It seems his message of running for both mayor and alderman never quite resonated with the voters.
I must admit, I was a bit confused myself. I understand Bonner is eager to serve his community, and I'm thankful for his desire to hold public office, but I think you ought to pick an elected position to seek and stick with it.
By running for everything, it didn't seem like Bonner was really running for anything. His campaign slogan might as well have been, "I've got to get elected to something, don't I?"
So Bonner has stepped aside and decided not to run for mayor, which I think is a wise decision. This allows him to concentrate on the job of getting re-elected as a McMinnville alderman and relieves widespread confusion among the electorate.
Another thing it does is create a monster truck-sized hole in the race for McMinnville mayor. For those who may have been paying attention in class, it was previously a two-man race. With Bonner gone, I believe it becomes a one-man show with incumbent Mayor Jimmy Haley now running unopposed.
But don't fret, lovely McMinnville residents. There's still time for another candidate to enter the race. The qualifying deadline is not until this Thursday so any interested candidate has nearly a week to get the necessary 25 signatures if he or she would like to vie for the highest office in all McMinnville.
I point this out not to anger Mayor Haley, who will probably be rolling my yard when I get home tonight. I believe Mayor Haley has done a steady job of guiding our fine city into pastures of prosperity and I don't shy away from giving him applause.
I point this out because I never like the idea of an elected official -- any elected official -- waltzing back into office without opposition. This is not to suggest I'm upset with the job Haley has done as our mayor. If I was terribly upset, I would have already written a letter to the editor.
But I believe everyone should be held accountable and I include the mayor of McMinnville in this group. People can get angry at elected officials in all levels of government to the point they may even proclaim something like, "Just wait till the election rolls around. We're going to vote you out of office."
This is a catchy saying, but it doesn't have any bite if there's not a candidate running in opposition. As it stands now, Mayor Haley could take a bulldozer and level the Blue Building and it wouldn't cost him the election. OK, so that's probably not a good example.
The point is, regardless of how well an elected official performs, it's nice to have some ready and willing opposition in place just in case. There is no accountability for elected officials who breeze into office without having to face an opponent. It's like winning by forfeit.
I hope there's a local resident ready to rise to the occasion, ready to step to the proverbial plate, and challenge Haley for city supremacy.
Standard editor James Clark can be reached at 473-2191.