Friday, February 11, 2011

Akron's Plusquellic, ever-feisty, running for 7th term

The Don is in no mood to retire.

The long-serving, short-tempered mayor of Akron announced today that he's taking a shot at a seventh term.

Don Plusquellic, mayor since 1987, said it wasn't an easy decision -- his children tried to convince him not to run. But as I wrote in the Power 100 issue of Inside Business, Plusquellic has trouble walking away from a fight. He wants to erase the memory of his near-loss in 2007, and he wants to be the guy who conquers the city's serious budget problems.

That means Akron City Hall will remain an exciting place: four more years* of Plusquellic's Sinatra-esque "my way" politics. Four more years of feuds with the Akron cops and the motley crew that tried to recall him in 2009. And maybe even another campaign appearance and endorsement by Chrissie Hynde.

Plusquellic was as combative as ever in his press conference today (covered by Bill Sheil of Fox 8). He addressed his never-ending union-negotiation struggles with the police thusly:

[Should I say,] here, take more and more, and I'll just sit back and let you fill out your own paychecks? Somebody has to stand-up. Is that polarization? I'll let you choose what word you use. But you can't in this world be successful with the 20-something percent of people who are always against everything.
Those 20-plus percenters* may coalesce around councilman and Don-rival Mike Williams, the Beacon Journal thinks.

*Update, March: Brent Larkin thinks another term for The Don is far from a sure thing. "Friends of Akron Mayor Don Plusquellic fear he will have a tough time winning," Larkin writes at the bottom of this column.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It would make for an interesting essay to compare Plusquellic's style of management to the management styles of the Cleveland's mayors. Jane Campbell vs Plusquellic, etc. If he was leading the City of Cleveland, I wonder if things would be better or worse than they are now. Akron has held it together pretty well compared to Cleveland.