Deadline Now: Lucas County Auditor Anita Lopez

Deadline Now: Lucas County Auditor Anita Lopez

Friday, August 30, 2013 at 8:30 p.m.

Lucas County Auditor Anita Lopez (D) is running for Mayor of Toledo. This week, she sits down with Jack Lessenberry for a full half-hour to talk about her plans for the city, if elected.

Here are Jack Lessenberry's Final Thoughts for this edition of "Deadline Now:"

If you live in Toledo and are a registered voter, you should vote for Anita Lopez for mayor. That is, you should vote for her if you are convinced she is the best of all the candidates running.
You should not vote for or against her because she is Hispanic, any more than you should for Mayor Bell because of his race, or vote for or against Michael Collins because he happens to be Irish.

Deciding who to choose for any office should be a threefold process. You look at where a candidate stands on the issues. But then, you have to assess whether you think they have the ability, integrity, experience and political know-how to get it done.

Finally, you look at the other candidate or candidates. An editorial writer for the New York Times once told me that when deciding who to endorse, it mostly came down to who the other candidate was. Much of the time, it is a less than perfect choice.

Sometimes, we may feel that it is a case of the lesser of two evils, or, in the worst-case scenarios, as a candidate for governor once told me, “between the less evil of two lessers." But sometimes, I think we sell the process short.

Running for office is, much of the time, not all that much fun. As Anita Lopez has found, you have to put your entire life, including your personal and financial history, under a microscope.

You are subjected to rigorous, and possibly unfair, criticism. You have to beg supporters for money, and put in long days trying to connect with people who are sometimes openly hostile. And if you do all that, and win, then you have to govern -- in collaboration with a city council whose agendas are not necessarily yours.

Yet we have to be grateful for those who do offer themselves and their talents. And I think we also need to be realistic.
Former New York City Mayor Ed Koch used to tell people, “if you agree with me on nine out of twelve issues, support me. If you agree with me on twelve out of twelve issues, see a psychiatrist.”

We shouldn’t expect our leaders to always agree with us on every point. Sometimes, we may be wrong. We should expect them to have the wisdom and maturity to govern.
That’s the best we voters can do.