Reportedly, Alderman Ted Hess-Mahan was caught off-guard when Village 14 broke the news Friday that the five-term alderman at-large would be challenging Mayor Setti Warren in his bid for re-election. According to Hess-Mahan, he’s still getting organized and has yet to form a campaign team. Based on the reasons he articulated for running, he clearly hadn’t refined his message when the news broke. Ted is definitely smart enough to know that he needs a more compelling platform than his desire to require a strategic plan and change policy around awarding affordable housing grants. Whatever his reasons for running, Hess-Mahan needs to state them in a way that doesn’t make his entry into the race look gratuitous. Otherwise he risks looking either petty or just plain suicidal.
Or maybe a win for Hess-Mahan will be defined by not losing by a large margin. If he gets his name out there now, is he getting a head start on the 2017 mayoral race?