Here’s to the also-rans

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By Optic Editorial Board

If there were an award for Las Vegas Citizen of the Year, we’d nominate Bruce McAllister. Here’s a man who serves on the Las Vegas Community Water Board, the Somos Familia board and the Public Works Advisory Committee, and he regularly attends City Council and Utilities Advisory Committee meetings — all in a volunteer capacity. He loves his adopted hometown, and shows it with an unwavering dedication to its betterment.

He ran for mayor and came in seventh in a field of eight. He never expected to win, but he wanted to make sure certain issues stayed on the front burner, and were intelligently discussed. He accomplished his mission.

Ditto for Edward Tsyitee, who brought up the rear in the mayor’s race. Both these men, and all the other candidates who lost, enriched the process by their very presence.

Now consider Frank Casey, who came in last in the Ward 3 council race.

Here’s a gadfly, a man who’s challenged the powers-that-be in this town more than once — sometimes inappropriately, other times with a damn good point or two, and always with an interest in pushing the city and its schools forward. Some would call him a pain in the hindquarters; others would say he’s an advocate for good government, tilting at every other windmill he sees.

This time around, he chose to put himself on the line and seek election. He didn’t get a lot of votes but he ran an admirable race. Hats off to you, Mr. Casey, for putting yourself out there.

Here’s to all those who lost. You spent your money and time seeking a place at City Hall, only to go down in defeat. Yours was not a lost cause; your candidacies made our democratic process turn. You ran the good race, fought the good fight, and finished with your head held high. Sometimes that’s the best a person can do.

We probably have five weeks before the runoff elections for mayor and Ward 3 councilor (it’s tentatively set for April 17, but that needs council approval before it’s official), and the field is narrowed to four. Alfonso Ortiz is facing Tonita Gurule-Giron for mayor and Joey Herrera is going up against Joe McCaffrey in Ward 3; Vince Howell has already won in Ward 2. As for the candidates who didn’t make it, perhaps they will throw their support behind one of the candidates left standing. If they do, we should consider their endorsements, for they paid their dues in the arena of public discourse.

Here’s to the also-rans. Your efforts were noble indeed.