A Recall in Kansas City?

I've been more focused on the possible recall of Portland Mayor Sam Adams, but today is a key date in the attempt to recall ...
by | May 25, 2009

I've been more focused on the possible recall of Portland Mayor Sam Adams, but today is a key date in the attempt to recall another mayor: Mark Funkhouser of Kansas City, Missouri.

Funkhouser's opponents must submit 17,000 valid signatures by today to get a recall vote. Those in the know in Kansas City think the recall won't make the ballot.

The New York Times this weekend chronicled why Funkhouser is controversial:

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- For a glimpse at how dysfunctional relations within this city's political leadership have grown, one need look no further than the downtown public library on Wednesdays. The city's mayor, Mark Funkhouser , and his top advisers have moved their weekly meetings to the library because one of those advisers -- the mayor's wife -- is no longer welcome inside City Hall.

It is among the most visible signs of the turmoil that has enveloped Mr. Funkhouser's two-year-old administration of this city of 450,000. By Monday afternoon, Mr. Funkhouser, known to many here simply as "Funk" or "The Funk," may have a sense of whether a resident-led effort to remove him has gathered the signatures it needs to advance.

...

Whatever stereotypes there are for politicians, Mr. Funkhouser, who considers himself an independent, fits none of them. He is 6-foot-8, bearded and gangly. He has a Ph.D. in public administration and sociology but grew up in the hills of West Virginia and once worked in an aluminum factory. And for almost two decades, he was Kansas City's auditor, a fearless, headline-grabbing critic of city programs who was unafraid to poke at Kansas City's business establishment, its developers and its political elite.

Josh Goodman
Josh Goodman  |  Former Staff Writer
mailbox@governing.com

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