Maren DeWeese upset Megan Benson Pratt in a 5-4 vote to become the first Pensacola City Council president. The swing vote wasn’t Ron Townsend, but PC Wu. I talked with Wu at the City Hall reception after the historic vote. He said that he hadn’t always agreed with DeWeese on council votes but he admired her passion and commitment to the City.
Significant political moves occurred before the vote. The council members considered DeWeese’s competitors, John Jerralds and Sam Hall, both withdrew their names prior to the vote. Jerralds said that he was more about implementation and was no longer interested in the post. Hall said that he had reached a decision over the weekend at a church leadership retreat to withdraw his name. He apologized to his supporters, but he no longer had a passion for the position.
Hall said that he thought the council president should be an at-large council member and that it should be like a consensus builder, Megan Pratt. The only statement made by any council member for a candidate for the position.
Hall and Jerralds dropping out freed Townsend of his commitments and he voted for Pratt, along with Hall, Jerralds and Pratt. The end run would have worked if not for Wu. Wu was later elected vice president of the council.
The Money Guys lost. They are now left with state representatives and superintendent of schools.