Thursday, November 5, 2009

The Running Man

Now Dave Bing won't have to run for mayor of Detroit anymore. Not for four more years, anyway---presuming he still wants the job after actually doing it.

Bing has been Detroit's mayor in title only. He hasn't been able to get to the meat of anything because he hasn't been mayor---he's been running for mayor.

But now the long litany of primaries and elections in Detroit is over with, Bing having easily disposed of challenger Tom Barrow on Tuesday in the (finally!) general election.

And there's an added bonus: Bing will get to work with a shiny new council president---one who isn't jaded and who is young and who would appear to have an esprit de corps about him.

Charles Pugh, the former TV reporter/host, was the surprise of the night, gathering the most votes of any council candidate, thus making him council president.

No Monica Conyers and her traveling sideshow. No Ken Cockrel Jr. --- a good man but perhaps stung by his own brief time as mayor. No career politician who's in bed with all sorts of unsavories in town.

Detroit couldn't ask for anything better. My opinion.


Mayor (permanently this time) Dave Bing


The city's residents get Bing, who truly cares---though he's already managed to alienate a whole bunch of city employees and some union folks and even volunteers. But in order to make an omelet....well, you know the rest.

And they get Pugh, leading council---fresh, eager, energized.

Dave Bing and Charles Pugh: The Old and the Restless.

So much better than the Mutt and Jeff days of not so long ago.

For the first time in nearly two years, Detroit can finally start to move forward.

It'll be two years this January when the Kwame Kilpatrick/"sexting" scandal hit the front page of the Detroit Free Press. From that moment on, Detroit was rudderless, essentially. Yes, Cockrel took over, by law, late last summer. Yes, he was followed by Bing. But in between, one of those guys was always running---in a primary or a special election or a general one.

Why the powers that be deemed that we have all this traipsing to the polls every few months is beyond me.

Detroit has burned while Nero---in the form of an election fetish---has fiddled around.

Now the real work starts for Dave Bing---and, to a lesser degree, Charles Pugh.

No more stumping. No more "I'll get to it once I get this job permanently." No more looking over the shoulder, to see who's gaining now.

Just...being mayor.

What a concept.

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