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ISSUE #117: I'm JubilANT - Bert Beats Mick

"One of the reasons people hate politics is that truth is rarely a politician's objective.  Election and power are."   -- Cal Thomas


Yes, it's over.  The results are in.  Bert Myrin unleashed a can of old-fashioned whoop ass on Mick Ireland in yesterday's run-off election for the remaining council seat, 1305 - 684 (66% - 34%).  

This hometown shellacking comes on the heels of the entrenched political class showing how little they have. The angry, class warfare-inciting, anti-business, anti-development, "bring back the quiet years" mob used Bert Myrin to compose and coordinate their anti-development Referendum 1 (which passed in May), only to allow it to be co-opted by Mick as a revisionist history come-back campaign platform.  Once Bert and Mick were in the run-off for the last council seat, this cabal swiftly threw Myrin under the bus and backed Mick with everything they had. Thankfully, the community has a long memory, and was not swayed by their shameless backing of Aspen's former mayor.

Many thanks, Red Ant readers, for voting.  When just 2000 people show up at the polls, your votes make a HUGE difference!!


Bert overcame the lack of support from both local papers, who preferred Mick's "experience" to Myrin's "new voice."  Interestingly, Bert had zero support from the council table either.  Mayor Skadron, Ann Mullins, Art Daily and yes, even Adam Frisch, vociferously endorsed Mick in the run-off.  Bert, a long-time community activist and P&Z commission member, won over the electorate with a sincere message that echoes the outcome of Referendum 1.  The community has clearly lost confidence in council and its decisions regarding development and, as the author of the new law that strips council of its ability to grant variances, Bert is now well positioned to implement the new rules and begin healing the divide that led to such a draconian change to our city charter.  Vowing to represent the community's small town character and values amidst the business interests of the resort, Bert clearly struck a chord.  I am not in agreement with Myrin's us/them characterization of the community and the resort -- I feel strongly that one is nothing without the other -- but am hopeful that Bert's proven ability to work across the proverbial aisle will serve the community well as we face the challenges inherent in applying Ref 1.  

Bert won because he is a gentleman.  He was undaunted when abandoned by the old guard, his erstwhile supporters in the Mick Machine.  He reached out to all corners of the community.  He has a record of always being prepared and he respects the process of good governance.  He communicates professionally.  Reach out and congratulate him.  It's the dawn of a new day.


Mick's shameless attempt at a council comeback was shown all the respect it deserved, which is far more than what he showed the electorate over his many years as county commissioner and mayor.  Time's up.  This was Mick's first loss as a candidate at the polls.  He tried to re-write history.  It didn't work.  The community did not fall for his 180-degree turn when he strongly backed Referendum 1.  He was, after all, the mayor when the most egregious variances in Aspen's history were granted.  Voters were also confused by Mick's criticism of city management and its lack of controls, because as mayor, he directed the granting of Steve Barwick's $170K/year contract and never followed up with annual reviews or a modicum of council oversight.  This led directly to Parking-Gate, among other Barwick financial follies.

The Red Ant was simply 4 years ahead of my time.  The community is indeed Sick of Mick.  (Many thanks to those who have donated to keep the up on the internet.  I knew it would come in handy again someday.)


Sitting council members would be well served to reflect on the outcome of this election.  It could easily be interpreted as the public's approval of city council in general.  The voters stripped council of a major responsibility in May, then showed all 4 members exactly what they thought of their unanimous endorsement of Mick's return. 

Bert will bring good government processes to the council table.  This will help amidst Skadron's frequent confusion.  He has also vowed to live up to his reputation as a patient listener.  I am optimistic.

In our little world, the concept of "mandate" is often brought up after elections in attempts to "elevate" certain council members above others based upon votes earned at the polls.  Let's all keep in mind that Bert just handed it to Mick in a more decisive margin than any of us could have hoped for.  

Welcome, Bert.  You have our support.  Let's get to work!

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