Tuesday, March 12, 2013
The College of Cardinals prayed at the Vatican yesterday seeking Devine guidance in the prelude to their meeting starting today to elect the new Pope. It is somewhat ironic their checking in with a higher power coincided with one of the most unusual political quotes uttered yesterday perhaps one of the most unusual I have ever heard.
The Argus Leader reported this morning, that at the announcement yesterday of Wal-Mart Stores increasing their presence in Sioux Falls, Mayor Mike Huether said,
“I was committed to seeing what I could do. Thank goodness I was elected Mayor." (emphasis added)
I have been active in politics at the local, state, and national levels for 36 years, interested in politics and reading about politics for now about 50 years and do not recall any politician talking about himself in such a way.
The Mayor likes to talk about himself. In a KELO television interview shortly after he took office, His Honor said, “I only wish that there were two Mike Huether’s instead of one, because there is so much I want to accomplish."
An often told anecdote is that only Thomas Jefferson referred to himself in the third person. While Mayor Huether did not refer in the third person, but a pol talking about them self is unusual and thanking goodness…well very unusual.
Consider the reaction had President Kennedy said at the successful conclusion of the Cuban Missile Crisis (where the American Forces blockaded Russian missiles from Cuba, risking War) “thank goodness I was elected President.”
Sometimes I agree with Mike Huether, sometimes I disagree, and I have worked with him on Library issues. He is a man of energy and he is possessed but I suggest he modulate his self assuredness.
Endbar – I like Wal-Mart. They are efficient, provide a service at generally low prices, and are a large employer in the communities they serve.
However to a politician Wal-Mart can be Kryptonite. Wal-Mart is controversial and has opponents as well as supporters. For example, the brouhaha when they wanted to locate at 69th and Cliff?
Politically speaking it will be interesting to watch Mayor Huether whom it is rumored might seek Federal office or run for Governor cozying up to Wal-Mart; using City Hall for the Press Conference and committing the City to work with Wal-Mart in assisting with the red tape in completing their new stores. My point here is – a potential candidate usually does not ally himself with controversy. The World’s largest retailer has important electoral constituencies as opponents including labor unions and small retailers among others.