Tony: Hang in there, Cowtown Election Season Is Almost Over

As the frat boy once said to his drunken Freshman female acquaintance, "We’re almost done here."

And a date rape joke is the perfect way to describe the beginning of the end of this Kansas City election cycle. Typically, The Kansas City Star split their Mayoral endorsements between two lawyers in a milquetoast attempt at diversity that means nothing. Most of the no-name City Council candidates are soon to be weeded out. And it looks like the tenure of Mayor Mark Funkhouser will soon be at an end.

Sadly, global economic turmoil along with wars and rumors of wars have more influence over local life than the guy serving the same cup of soup in the Mayor’s office in this cowtown.

So, it’s with no small sense of relief that we approach the end of the Mayoral race and most likely Funkhouser’s last days in office despite the deep admiration of suburbanites who don’t have to deal with his stubborn, dour and aloof leadership style.

Supporting facts for Mayor Funky’s departure:

Without The Star endorsement he would have never been elected the first time. He’s never had support at the Mayoral level.

The alternative choices against him are all very strong. The field is far less crowded than when Mayor Funky first ascended to power. He was competing against a field of more than a dozen back in 2007. This time even old school Mayor Charles Wheeler is more entertaining then the beleaguered incumbent.

Of course the field is split now among the candidates, but this is important: Funkhouser isn’t going to pick up any votes from this field of contenders. Expect all of the candidates to throw their support behind the Mayor’s opponent if he even manages to get past the primary.

Still, the most important factor is the economy and nobody likes talking about how dismal things really are for voters in this election. Last year, KC didn’t get any of the bull market bounce that other cities enjoyed. Instead, the reaction to financial devastation has been delayed and this town’s housing market still lingers at the bottom of the bubble.

Crime continues to be a frightening fact of life as well.

Even if Mayor Funkhouser didn’t have his public perception problems, it would be difficult for him to hold on to power. For better or worse, the fact that my cowtown unknowingly votes with their pocketbooks along with so many other personal prejudices makes impending defeat seem nearly inevitable for Mark Funkhouser.

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