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News-Sentinel.com Your Town. Your Voice.
Opening Arguments

Ticket hole

Democratic 4th District City Council candidate Charles Langley is dropping out of the race:

According to a letter written by Langley, he was promoted by the Southwest Allen County Schools Board on June 5 to department coordinator for social studies at Summit Middle School, where he teaches.

“It is my fear that with these new responsibilities in addition to potentially holding a political office that my performance in education would at times be lackluster,” he wrote. “I will not chance giving less than my best for one second to education.”

That's a good reason. People who run for office often talk about "giving back" to the community, but if they're already in a position to contribute, there's no point in taking on even more if it would detract from their ability to perform in their "real" jobs. I've known a lot of council members during my journalistic life, and most of them do not consider it a one-meeting-a-week commitment. They put in a lot of hours on a lot of issues. District council members, in particular, end up being at the beck and call of constituents who feel aggrieved or neglected.

I've known Mitch Harper, the Republican candidate, for a long time and I think he would be a great council member. But I hope Democrats find a worthy opponent for him. Maybe he hopes so, too, if his gracious reaction to Langley's decision is any indication.