The Concession Speech of Mayor Joseph Wilders

10:57PM, November 4, 2008

Ladies and gentlemen, fellow citizens, Democrats of our fair city, and all of you who have worked so hard with me these last four years: it is time to move on.

We extend our congratulations to Councilwoman Cosgrove, who fought a hard campaign and achieved victory after initially being considered a serious underdog. Of course, our Democratic ticket was split, and it’s easy to get people on your side when you have a kid like that, but that doesn’t make any difference now. Ms. Cosgrove beat us in a fair fight, and all we can hope is that she takes her role as the new leader of this city as seriously as she takes her role as chairwoman of the Upper West Bridge and Ornithological Society.

The challenges Ms. Cosgrove will face as the new mayor will be many and varied. The decline of our environmental standards, a faltering economy, and a major shift in leadership at the national and state level will only exacerbate the existing problems of running a large municipal area such as this. Additionally, there were a number of crises towards which, once it became clear that my re-election was in doubt, I chose to take a ‘hands-off’ approach, so that my eventual successor would be able to jump right into the swing of things right away. Our people demand more from their leaders than a wasteful ‘honeymoon period’. I would love to offer my services to the new mayor should she wish to take advantage of my two terms’ worth of experience, but unfortunately, my lovely wife Jean and I will be called away to Aruba to help our son Geoffrey train for the Olympics for the next two and a half years. We do wish her all the luck in the world, though, and would like to remind her that there is no shame in resigning rather than hurting your job performance with bad decision-making.

In my two terms as mayor, I have sought to elevate our fair city to its rightful place as a crown jewel of American cities. To that end, I have visited dozens of foreign cities to see how they are run, to take with me their good policies (wrought iron, portion control, solar lawnmowers) while rejecting their bad ones (kidnapping, fascism, overpriced mai-tais). I have vigorously fought for food safety, paperwork reduction, and a stationary bike in every home, a goal I feel we could have achieved by 2010 if given the chance. Some, like my honorable opponent Mr. Armstrong (the Libertarian one), claimed that I was spending too much time away from home. To this I reply: I spent so much time away only because it made me ever more eager to return. Others, like Mr. Pierce of the Fifth Ward, asked me who I was and what I did for a living. To which I proudly say: I am Joseph Wilders, and I was once the mayor of this city.

I thought there’d be more applause for that one.

Anyway, there are those who say my policies were too radical. There are those who say the city didn’t need a goat wrangler. There are those who say that there is nothing that Acapulco could teach us that necessitated a six-week fact-finding tour. There are those who say that issuing municipal bonds in my own name is against the letter as well as the spirit of the law. But I will tell them what I told those who supported me all these years: everything I have ever done as mayor, I have done to help this city. So if some of the things I have done have been questionable, or unethical, or a fire hazard, you should really be blaming the city, not me.

Thank you for the opportunity to lead. I look forward to writing you many postcards. Good night.
– Leonard Pierce

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