New mayor of Kansas City, Kan., likely to be person of color
The Kansas City Star
Joe Reardon’s decision to not seek a third term as mayor and chief executive of Wyandotte County opens the door to that community electing its first person of color to that office.
Wyandotte County already is a majority-minority community. The total population, according to the 2011 U.S. Census estimate, is 158,224.
About 25.1 percent are African Americans; 1.4 percent, Native Americans; 2.7 percent, Asian Americans; and 26.7 percent are Latino, making white people a minority. Some contenders who have surfaced already are Unified Board of Commissioners Nathan Barnes, Ann Murguia and Mark Holland.
A coalition of voters of color like the one that helped elevate President Barack Obama over Republican challenger Mitt Romney in 2012 will likely get behind the person elected as the city’s new mayor. But that will take a campaign centered on a theme of unity.
Wyandotte County has enjoyed a lot of new development in its western region. But the urban core of Kansas City, Kan., has suffered.
Let’s hope the new mayor will bring badly needed attention to the heart of the community.
The primary election is Feb. 26; the general election is on April 2. The race promises to be exciting.