Thanks to the InTowner for this endorsement (huge PDF on Page 2).
In light of Councilmember Phil Mendelson’s long record of effective advocacy for residents across the city and for his thoughtful approach to carefully analyzing the complexities of policy issues as they affect our laws and regulations—and ultimately our daily lives—and crafting legislation solutions, we have no reason to suggest that there might be any good purpose to vote him off the council.
When we took a look at the 25 bills, eight resolutions, and five reports that the council’s public safety committee, of which he is its tireless chairman, has been responsible for issuing over the past year-and-a-half, we can only conclude that its highly competent output reveals much about the skill and worth to our city of the council member. This we are not prepared to advocate tossing aside.
Among his accomplishments that are of major importance has been his work in getting the council to declare the role of the city’s attorney general as being independent from the Executive Branch and calling for the position to be filled by election.
Another major accomplishment has been his bringing to fruition the “Omnibus Public Safety and Justice Amendment Act” which affected 39 separate laws by improving various provisions thereby improving law enforcement. The Act also created new crimes, including one dealing with illegal firearms in motor vehicles, and added a new authority to address gang violence by establishing a practical, on-the-streets intervention mechanism designed to reduce such violence.
We are puzzled by complaints that we hear in some circles that the council member is not “aggressive” enough, that he’s too “low-key” and therefore isn’t effective. We strongly disagree. While we admire legislators who come on strong (but only if they are especially smart and knowledgeable), this doesn’t mean that one who is quiet isn’t equally effective. This is a council member who is deliberative, a stickler for detail, one who watches out for every nuance in the language of the legislation that he is called upon to vote. We need members on the council with that skill to ensure that what gets enacted into law doesn’t later reveal flaws that create unintended consequences for the city or for individual citizens.
With this, along with his constant watching out for efforts by city government officials seeking to chip away at civil rights in the name of crime prevention or other perceived dangers by bureaucrats, we enthusiastically urge the re-election without hesitation of at-large Councilmember Phil Mendelson.