We've been critical of some of Mayor-Elect Berry's choices - particularly Chief Schultz and David Campbell. However, they are Berry's choices for good or ill. The major difference between the outgoing mayor and the incoming mayor is that R.J. Berry is making choices that he believes are good for the city - people who can keep the governmental lights on and keep the buses running on time.
Monday, the Albuquerque Journal ran what can only be described as a puff piece - fortunately the final puff piece of the Chavez tenure. Predictably, the Journal's focus was on the Chavez Legacy.
"I think, when all is said and done, people will say Mayor Chávez got things done," Chávez said Friday in a telephone interview. "The city is dramatically different than it was, I believe, when we started."The article goes on to list water conservation, the Montaño Bridge, the Paseo extension, graffiti removal, blah, blah, blah. Marty said himself that he couldn't take full responsibility - and that's probably the first absolutely honest quote we've read in a very long time. And one other thing... the mob gets things done too.
He added that he had help from city administrators: "I can't take full responsibility for everything."
The fact is Marty had a lot of help from a lot of different elected officials. Moreover, how many of his legacy accomplishments would have been accomplished under another mayor? (Ok, maybe not Jim Baca.)
Marty's true legacy will be one of self-service and ever-increasing tyrannical behavior. Which brings us back to our new beginning.
If you'll remember, the Chavez campaign ran a whole slew of misleading commercials trying to portray Berry as less than honest. (Berry's new Chief of Police participated in a similar attack on Berry's character implying that he was somehow responsible for the crimes perpetrated against him.) The fact is the reason Marty was attacking Berry's honesty is because Mayor Berry is an honest man and as such he will honestly administer city government and we're all better for it.
Don't kid yourself... government is never pretty. Generally speaking, governments are made up of competing interests, beliefs, and agendas. Some feel that the ends justify the means and will do anything to advance their agenda. As a result, there will be bumps in the road and embarrassments for the new administration. The difference will be in how those bumps are handled by the mayor himself.
In October, the voters restored integrity to the mayor's office. We have high hopes for the future and for the new beginning that Mayor Berry brings with him.