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> Bob McGee to run for City Council
post Jan 11 2007, 10:15 AM
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McKee announces candidacy for council

By Jason Miller, The News-Dispatch

Bob McKee hoped his dad, Roger, would help push him into local public office like he had so many candidates over the years.

McKee said Wednesday night that, since his father's death some two weeks ago, he'll have to take what his father taught him and use it to run on his own.

“As far as I'm concerned, he still is my campaign manager,” McKee said of his late father Wednesday at an announcement party at Memorial Hall in Michigan City. “I'm doing this because the future of Michigan City is so important to all of us.”

McKee, a Democrat, announced Wednesday he'll seek an at-large seat on the Michigan City Common Council in next year's general election. He'll likely run against incumbents Joe Doyle, Virginia Martin and Evelyn Baker.

None of the three have yet announced their candidacy, but speculation is all three plan to run again.

McKee said Wednesday his campaign will focus on changing the face of a council he says often is set in its ways and refuses to even consider making changes for “progress” in Michigan City.

He also said the board needs a fresh mentality in which people, “from every walk of life,” are treated fairly and with respect.

In the last year, McKee - who serves as president of the city's park board - has publicly feuded with council memebers Paul Przybylinski, Phil Jankowski and Ron Meer over what McKee said was the trio's lack of vision and lack of respect shown to those who disagree with them.

“We need positive leadership. I'm certainly not a rubber stamp,” he said. “Nor will I act as a roadblock to progress in Michigan City.

McKee received support Wednesday from friends Dennis Burke, Tom Thomas and Lynne Kaser. Burke said McKee's love of Michigan City will be the driving force in the campaign.

Kaser, who along with her late husband Bob, have been family friends for decades, said McKee is the person to “finally fulfill” the potential that people often say has been wasted in Michigan City.

Thomas said McKee would bring a needed dose of professionalism to a council whose members - “not all of them, but some” - lack it.

McKee asked Thomas and Burke to join him as council candidates during his remarks Wednesday night. The two didn't answer McKee publicly because they said they wanted “the night to be his.”

Both later told The News-Dispatch, though, that they intend to run and will announce soon. Burke lives in the 3rd Ward and will run against the entrenched Przybylinski, and Thomas will run against first-term, 6th Ward councilman Jankowski.

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