Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Mike's Power Grab

I like Mayor Bloomberg. He's done a good job and he's probably the right person to be at the city's helm during this financial crises. Also, I'm against term limits because I don't think it's smart to lame-duck our elected officials or deny the public the right to vote for or against whoever they want.

But ... Mike's desire to do an end-run around the voter ratified term-limits law via a City Council bill is wrong. The voters approved this law twice and it's not right for Mike and these guys to essentially veto the will of the people. It's undemocratic and it's really nothing more than a transparent power grab.

If the term limits law is abolished or amended in this way, there's no doubt that Mike will win a third term. He's popular and super-rich; as a political independent, Democrats and Republicans will have no problem voting for him. But I think that this will really damage Mike's legacy, for three reasons:

1. Mike was for term limits before he was against them. This ploy will damage his credibility and legacy, even if he wins.

2. Mike was elected as an outside the establishment reformer, more interested in serving the public good than in accumulating power. This appears more to be about him keeping power than anything else.

3. There have only be three Mayors who have served three terms -- LaGuardia, Wagner, and Koch. Like Mike, they were very popular during their first two terms. But almost all NYC political pundits agree that there third terms were largely disasters. History has a nasty way of repeating itself.

Tomorrow Mike is supposed to officially announce his intentions to seek a third term. If he gets whipped by a severe backlash, don't say that Mr NYC didn't tell ya so.

Bloomberg Expected to Seek Third Term as Mayor

Third Term No Charm, Historians Say

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