Fort Worth Mayor Mike Moncrief announced he won’t be seeking reelection in May after eight years as Fort Worth’s most visible and powerful elected official.
Of course, he didn’t announce it personally to Fort Worth Weekly.
He’s steadfastly refused to speak to Weekly writers during his eight years as mayor. Seems to me he prefers newspapers to write positive things about the city. Civic pride. Boosterism. Since our specialty is lengthy, investigative pieces exposing problems at city hall, we’re persona non grata to him, just pesky naysayers trying to muck up things by insisting on transparency, ethics, and public participation in city government. (In our confused brains, exposing incompetence or corruption means we care.)
The Weekly will offer a more detailed look at Moncrief’s tenure in the future, but for the sake of this blog post we’ll just say he had his highs (luring ESPN to Sundance Square for Super Bowl week) and his lows (throwing down the welcome mat to urban gas drillers with scant regulation or environmental protections in place) — and he had his long, smoldering silences.
Snarky articles such as “Little Mikey’s Big Adventure” (penned by Eric Griffey and myself in 2008) surely didn’t help matters.
We pictured Little Mikey (a Moncrief boblehead doll) with cigars, martinis, a transvestite, a knife-wielding mugger, and other fun props — and, damn, I’d love to post the photos that were deemed as too over-the-top by our editor. Oh well.
Former Fort Worth city council member Cathy Hirt has already announced her intention to run for mayor. She says Fort Worth “deserves a principled and innovative leader.” Hirt maintains open communication with the Weekly.
Fort Worth lawyer, Tarrant Water Board member, and former city council member Jim Lane is also aiming to fill Moncrief’s vacated seat.
“I”m going to go down this afternoon and file our campaign treasure designation,” he said. “We’ll file officially next week. I’ll have a campaign kickoff in the latter part of February.”
Lane has always been good about talking to us and returning phone calls. And his first campaign promise was directed at the Weekly — he says he’ll talk to us if elected mayor: “Y’all are no longer not getting your phone calls returned,” he said. “I don’t care what you write. It’s your opinion. If it’s a factual piece I expect the facts to be straight.”
Our facts are straight. We check and double check. And in the few instances when we make a mistake, we print a correction.
On the other hand, be careful about giving us bobblehead dolls.