Check out Madison Mayor Dave Cieslewicz's blog on journalism. When elected officials respect, appreciate and understand the role of the media, you just want to hug 'em. Last year on Neil Heinen's Sunday news show, For the Record, I opined that Mayor Dave was a great city manager but a political animal he was not. Among the many issues I was reacting to were his quietly confident style—as opposed to some of his more outspoken and dramatic predecessors—as well as a few high-profile dust-ups, like the Meadowood Neighborhood meeting where residents took aim at him for not putting public safety first.
Soon after the mayor dropped his campaign for light rail and redoubled his efforts on crime and other grassroots problems the city faced. I've heard plenty of folks say he's actually an extremely skilled politician who simply gets the job done differently. I'm starting to see what they mean. Maybe now it's time those neighbors whose concerns Mayor Dave took to heart step up again, this time to help him fight for a greener, more affordable and cost-effective transit system, including streetcars, to get them where they need to go.