Editorial: How to Get Better Representation on the City of Milwaukee Common Council

by Vince Bushell

The answer is simple. Have an informed, participating electorate choose them!

The problem with the current situation in the sixth aldermanic district is that the elected representative, Alderman McGee, is the target of a recall petition.

He would say that he is the victim of a recall effort by those with a meanspirited agenda. Like him or not, it is hard for me to see how this recently overused recall process will get us better representation.

It is costing us money for a special election and the process allows little time to consider the candidates. For those reasons alone I hope the voters of the sixth district reject ViAnna Jordan, who instigated the recall and the folly that has accompanied that effort.

The regularly-scheduled election in 2008 would have been soon enough for voters to express their opinion on McGee. And it would have allowed time for the voters to consider the other candidates.

Not to mention the fact that a much higher percentage of eligible voters would probably have participated in the process.

So now we will have a special election with a predictably poor turn out. McGee is claiming to be a victim rather than defending his record. A passel of other candidates are on the ballot with little name recognition and no chance for the voters to become aware of their qualifications for this office.

This is not a prescription for better representation.

The resulting election will probably not give us a candidate with more than 50% of the vote.

That is a good thing in that there will be a better chance to get to know the candidates that succeed in coming in first and second. You will have four weeks to do that (May 1 is set for the next round). I predict McGee will have enough votes to make it to the May runoff.

I know Una VanDuvall, one of the candidates running against McGee. She wanted to run for the office and would have preferred the regular election process to this recall circus.

I hope VanDuvall comes out the other side of this April contest to run one on one against McGee in a campaign that focuses on issues

Riverwest Currents online edition – March, 2007