On December 18, the voters of Ward 14 clearly and convincingly showed their good judgment (with 60% of the vote) in rejecting the recall of Councilman Joe Santiago.
This wholly unnecessary election was the result of one disgruntled former office holder. It cost the voters of Cleveland some $47,000, or about $40 for each vote cast. If it had been successful, it would have cost the city more than $50,000 to hold a special election...
This is not right. A sore loser should not force our entire city to pay for his ego. The voters of Ward 14 held an election in 2005, and they dismissed the prior office holder for a variety of reasons, not the least of which was the same lack of judgment and penchant for confrontation so obviously on display in the recall.
The City Charter unfortunately did not include any criteria for the recall of a councilman. This allows an abuse of the system, in which any councilman can be recalled on even the flimsiest of pretexts, such as a difference of opinion on a single routine decision.
This recall election was being held in the ward with the largest concentration of Hispanics and targeted Joe Santiago, the only Hispanic councilman. It is important to point out that there was not a single, responsible Hispanic leader supporting this recall effort.
Voters of Ward 14 spoke loudly and clearly. Unfortunately, the city had to pay a very steep price to hear their voice.
Jose C. Feliciano