The co-canine mayors have some parting words

Nelson held court over Concord for the past year, but his time in office is coming to a close.
Nelson held court over Concord for the past year, but his time in office is coming to a close.
Victoria’s reign over City Hall is coming to an end.
Victoria’s reign over City Hall is coming to an end.

Concord’s first ever canine mayors were elected last year. Alas, their terms are coming to an end, but we’ve got the exclusive exit interviews with both of them! First up, basset hound Victoria.

What was it like being the first canine mayor of Concord?

Being the first co-canine mayor of Concord has been an amazing experience. I’ve met many wonderful people, who believe in the betterment of the lives of all canines, and, of course, the anti-squirrel movement. There have been a few, though, that doubted the veracity of my claim to the office, that is until I mentioned the write-up in the Concord Insider. Once they read the story in a well-respected paper like the Insider, they knew it must be legitimate!

Do you think you were able to make a difference during your term?

I’ve brought attention to the plight of homeless animals by taking the movement to the streets. Many a weekend I’ve pounded the sidewalks of Main Street, speaking of the issues and the steps that must be taken by each and every one of us. I’ve marched in a parade, I’ve traveled to neighboring states, spreading the word. I’ve raised over $1,000, without raising taxes, to help the homeless animals of the Concord Merrimack-County SPCA. My current fundraiser is a T-shirt, which not only raises money for the shelter, but spreads the word about the anti-squirrel movement. I have personally chased squirrels across state lines. Concord many not be free of squirrels, but there are far fewer squirrel in the city than there would have been had I not been elected.

Did any new issues come up throughout the course of the year?

An issue I hadn’t originally addressed while campaigning actually came up in my last interview with the Insider. I was asked a pointed question about Mitt Romney, and I took a stand: Mitt Romney is NOT a friend to canines! When the article was published, I lost many fans of my Facebook page. However, one Facebook fan from North Carolina read the article and sent me a “I Ride Inside” bandana, which I wear with pride, in memory of Seamus.

Are you thinking about running for a second term?

As rewarding as the past year has been, and in spite of the urging of my friends to run for a second term, I pledged an oath to run for only one term as canine mayor. Some voters have asked if I would consider running for another office, and it is not out of the question.

What advice do you have for the prospective new canine mayors?

Speak from the heart and on issues you believe in! Do not bark just to hear yourself or because you think it’s what your constituents want to hear. You’ll never be able to follow through on your campaign pledges if you do, and you do not want to spend the next year wearing the cone of shame.

There is going to be a feline mayor this year; do you predict any infighting?

I believe the canine mayor and the new feline mayor can work together on the issues. Sure, there will be differences, but I think on the important issues there will be some middle ground. Whether you are anti-squirrel or anti-skunk, like Mayor Nelson, I think you’ll find a lot of canines and felines in agreement.

Any parting words for your constituents?

Concord is a wonderful city! Use your time in office to make a difference; the people of Concord deserve your best.

Next up, we have the other co-canine mayor – Nelson, a Great Dane.

What was it like being the first canine mayor of Concord? Do you think you were able to make a difference during your term?

Serving as your canine mayor has been a great honor. During my term we were able to raise awareness for many pressing canine issues. In particular, we addressed the use of offensive and charged language in dog-related discourse. My office censured the thoughtless, ignorant politicians that complained of dog “fouling.” So offensive. Also, transportation became a big issue in 2012. I came out early in strong opposition to transporting canines on the roof of cars. That’s not how we do things in Concord. In Concord, canines are the co-pilot.

Are you thinking about running for a second term?

I will not be seeking a second term. I have sat down with a number of candidates and am excited to formally announce my endorsement of Moses Van Ostern for canine mayor. He’s a proven leader in the canine anti-skunk and anti-squirrel campaigns. I’m looking forward to walking the city with him, sniffing voters, and talking about how we can keep Concord the best city in New Hampshire for dogs to live and adopt a family.

There is going to be a feline mayor this year; do you predict any infighting?

Feline mayor? What’s next? Evil overlord mayor? Or maybe Somali pirate mayor? My greatest disappointment during my time as mayor is that the legislation I backed, mandating leashes for cats at all times, was never passed. The introduction of a feline mayor is a great blow to the integrity of our city. While these ravenous criminals are allowed to wander free on our streets, Concord will never be safe.

What advice do you have for the prospective new canine mayors?

Don’t be afraid to go negative. I’d like to see some attack ads targeting Pit Romney and his ridiculous stance on Lyme vaccinations.

Any parting words for your constituents?

In the word of George Washington, “The people must remain ever vigilant against tyrants masquerading as public servants.” And by tyrants he means cats. It didn’t make the history books, but all of our founding fathers were dog people. 

Author: Ben Conant

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