City needs Johnson for smooth transition

It’s clear that Mayor Harvey Johnson Jr. is wounded by results from the May 3 Democratic primary.

That’s understandable. No one likes rejection.

Johnson, who was seeking a third term to a post he clearly enjoyed, didn’t just lose. He was mauled. Challenger Frank Melton carried six of the city’s seven wards. Johnson won only in Ward 2, where he lives.

The electorate’s message was clear. Still, the Johnson family deserves compassion. The Johnsons sacrificed a lot during the last eight years.

This does not mean, however, that Johnson no longer has to act as the city’s leader during the final weeks of his tenure. The city in many ways needs Johnson now more than ever to help orchestrate an orderly transition.

That’s not the impression Johnson gives with his surprising bunker mentality toward the news media.

Johnson has a lot more class than this.

Eric Stringfellow
Clarion Ledger
5/15/5