In what seems to be more and more common each election we face in Hartford, a new Academy Award should be established for best Actor in the "Theatre of the Political Bizarre".
Flanked by the current Mayor, who candidate Wooden had labeled as "pretending to be fiscally responsible" and that Segarra had "forgotten to obey the law" and along side Governor Malloy, Shawn Wooden today gave up and quit the Mayor's race.
But have no fear though, since he gave up running for Mayor, he now wants to throw his full support behind an individual that until about 24 hours ago he wanted us to believe was unfit to lead the City of Hartford. And to further reassure us of his integrity , he wants to be "in a leadership role" and has decided to run for City Council.
Unfortunately for Wooden though, I didn't receive one call from anyone that supported Wooden's decision. Many of the calls were from, up until noon time today, die-hard Wooden supporters. Several of them were also financial supporters who had donated the maximum of $1,000 to Woodens campaign.
The rumors of dirty deals being cut were, and are, running rampant. Many people, myself included, are having a hard time figuring out how you tear someone down for months and try to convince us that Segarra is unfit to be Mayor, and in less than a day you have a sudden epiphany and next thing are standing side by side with your new found love for each other.
How many people would take me seriously if I announced tomorrow that I think Eddie Perez should come back and run for Mayor? I would say very few, and most would think I had lost my mind. That was the feeling I was getting today is that very few people are holding Shawn Wooden real high on the integrity and trust meter.
I am trying to understand Governor Malloy's involvement in this mess though. The Governor explained his long term friendship with Wooden, and I understand the loyalty of friends, it's sometimes hard to find. But I also have to wonder the last time a sitting Governor stepped into a municipal political dogfight. And if anything, Governor Malloy I would think understands the benefit of a hard fought political campaign. He's come through a few himself and I would hope is stronger for it.
Isn't democracy all about letting the voters decide who comes out ahead in the political fight? Holding politicians accountable by forcing them to fight for what they believe in is not a negative thing. Instead, Wooden is like the boxer headed for the ring, afraid to climb over the ropes and get the fight started because he may get a black eye or a bloody nose.
Luckily for Wooden, his big brother Dannel pulled him off the ropes and allowed him a graceful exit from a fight, apparently according to Wooden's polling data, a fight that he couldn't win. But Malloy has been in the ring and realizes the value of the fights, so I don't understand the need to rescue Wooden from one of lifes hard taught lessons.
And why should we now think that Wooden will make a decent Councilperson. Especially if he wasn't willing to fight to save us from the unfit leaders like Pedro Segarra. Is Wooden just a bad judge of character and now realizes he misjudged Segarra? And what reassurance do we have that Wooden just won't roll over and give up when the tough battles need to be waged for what is right for Hartford and its people?
Will he still be afraid of the black eye or the bloody nose from the Council fights and be waiting for Governor Malloy to pull him off the ropes and rescue him from the ring?
I guess it isn't a bad thing to have a friend like the Governor watching your back, but do we want the wimp on the playground to be the one watching out for us as residents of a city in distress? I think we need a few people on the Council that aren't looking for someone to rescue them when the going gets tough, but rather people that are willing to fight to the end for what they believe in.
The video of Wooden's retreat is below for your viewing pleasure, "and the Academy Award for the most bizarre political performance in a less than leading role goes to........Shawn Wooden"