Although I was disappointed in the final vote for Harrison Square I still felt a tremendous amount of pride in the city of Fort Wayne last night. In a nation full of partisan bickering and backstabbing the Harrison Square vote is a shining example of what is inherently good and right in our democratic system of government.
I would venture to say that anyone that didn't already know the political affiliation of the council members could not have guessed them after watching last night's meeting, but let's not forget what this could have been. We had a Democratic mayor proposing a major project in his last year with the vote coming two weeks before the city primary. In this situation one would almost expect this to turn into a partisan battle with Republicans running for cover while undercutting the project at every opportunity.
The reality is - nothing could be further from the truth. Council members from both parties took this vote seriously and kept the politics out and they should be commended for doing so. This council will be losing at least two members in Dr Hayhurst and Sam Talarico Jr - both are tremendous councilmen and they will not be easily replaced. There certainly may be more changes as well, and I hope that whomever the voters decide to send to council, they can equal the passion and integrity of those they are replacing.
Even on the smallest scale when democracy wins we all win, and I was proud to be a part of the Harrison Square discussion. This city, even if only for a day, was an example of what this nation can become...