Last week the city council locked horns on picking a replacement for the late John Masson’s District 2 council seat.
There were nine applicants for the seat, most of them highly qualified. The council couldn’t agree on a replacement because two members wanted to fill the vacancy with a particularly political philosophy and the other two wanted to nominate another political philosophy.
Mayor Paul McNamara summed up the disagreement when he said that District 2 should be given a representative of a similar political philosophy of the man that it elected two years ago.
This gridlock seems to have a happy result: That the people of the district will pick their representative, rather than having the council pick it for them.
You might ask, why does it matter if there are only a few months remaining until the election anyway? The answer is that when someone is appointed to fill a vacancy he or she acquires the cachet of “incumbent” and automatically gains a certain advantage of anyone who might challenge that choice.
Since there were nine people willing to step forward for the job, it stands to reason that a few of them will also be willing to campaign for the job. They, and anyone else who wants to toss their hat into the right should be welcomed. And may the best candidate win!