Monday, January 03, 2005

Politics Requires Fortitude

Chris Portman (R-Mercer, PA), one of the youngest mayors in the US, and likely the youngest in PA, resigned his post three years into his four-year term.

It takes some guts, determination, and stamina to stay the course as a politician. Portmanhad the first two and hit the ground running at the tender age of 19. It took him a Mercer Minute to realize that he was the wrong guy in the wrong job at the wrong time.

Mercer has a weak-mayor system. The mayor has no voting power. The primary job description is to oversee the police department. Portman had vision and moxie, but he was better suited for council. He did have good charisma and visibility, and those traits (in addition to his age) brought positive attention to Mercer.

Unfortunately, Portman lacked stamina. If his lack of knowledge of the system put him into an unwanted position, he should have worked as hard as possible within the system. He got into arguments with council, typically over petty things. His mother even embarassingly came to a council meeting to demand that council stop picking on her son.

Portman pulled away from the job, missing most of the 2004 council meetings. Eventually, the young politico who surprised the town, county, state, and nation, surprised no one by walking away.

Perhaps he is through with politics. He should be. He packed up and left the state for other opportunities, failing to complete a single term. He has requested the media respect his privacy, even though he is - well, was - a public figure.

Portman wants to be left alone. That's fine. Best wishes to him. Now Mercer needs to find someone who seriously wants to be mayor.

6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hello,
My name is Christopher Seeley. Just like Portman, I am running for mayor of my hometown of Linesville,PA (just a county north of mercer) at a tender young age. Right now I'm 17. I'll be 18 by general election day so that's not an issue. I admire Portman for his initiative, but I'm sure he realizes that you have to be tremendously open-minded in a position like this. (I'm a Democrat, so that's not difficult for me) Hopefully I don't meet the same fate.

-Christopher R. Seeley

Anonymous said...

Hello All,
I want you to know that I personally know Chris Portman and I know that he is a great man and was an inspiration to millions of kids who, just like the previous post, took a stand and decided that he COULD make a difference in the World. Chris is the absolute representation of a person who has the desire, ambition and ability to do "whatever it takes" to create a different view of exactly what the world of politics has to look like.

Chris's tenure in PA was carried throughout the world and he was immmediately thrust into the national spotlight.

Quite an awesome challenge, if you ask me.

Chris has taken the lessons that he learned in PA and is now using those talents and abilities to make a real difference in the world. He has left the umbrella of Government, but have no doubt, Chris will be back.... just watch!

-Rob
Salt Lake City, Utah
robert@cnnlegal.com

Anonymous said...

Read the entire Story posted at:

http://www.mywesterncapital.com/portman.html

Anonymous said...

Hahahahaha, whatever. Christopher Portman's favorite "pickup" line was "So, are you interested in being the First Lady?"

He's suited for politics: he's a womanizer.

Rich Talbert said...

Check out my updated story.

Thanks!

Kelly said...

Chris Portman is hot and a good kisser.