A lighter atmosphere during the mystery candidate Q&A
Mayor Luke Ravenstahl's somber and reflective news conference on Friday had a few lighter moments. Some came when the mayor -- in response to questions -- revealed the existence of his chosen mystery candidate.
This unnamed person is Ravenstahl's favorite to jump into the mayor's race to succeed him, now that he's dropped out. Here are my notes of that Q&A , starting with Jon Delano's questions that suddenly brought laughter and smiles from the mayor.
Q: "Mayor, there are only two candidates, two announced candidates to succeed you --"
A: "I'm sure that will change soon."
Q: "My question is, are you encouraging others to get in this race or to look at this?"
(The mayor chuckles, pauses, then answers.)
A: "Yes. (Smiling.)
(More reporters' laughter.)
Q: "Do you have a specific candidate in mind, mayor?"
A: (Smiling) "Yes."
Q: "Obviously, that candidate has not yet announced?"
Q: "Would you like to share with us who that candidate is?"
Moments later, Delano followed up.
Q: "I want to come back to this candidate you that would like to see run for mayor."
A: "Yes." (The mayor chuckles again, and takes a drink of water.)
Q: "Have you spoken to this candidate?"
(There's a pause.)
A: "No." (The mayor smiles again.)
Q: "You have no indication whether this person wants to run for mayor or not?"
Q: "Do you intend to speak to this candidate and encourage this person to run?"
A: "Yes." (Smiling.)
Q: "And there's nothing more you're going to tell us?"
A: "Not right now, no."
I then joined in with my own followup questions.
Q: "Just to be clear, do you envision, in a sense, a surrogate of the Ravenstahl administration to carry on the agenda of the administration and the Ravenstahl administration team? Do you think that's the best course for your people and for the city?"
A: "I'm sorry, say that again?"
Q: "Do you envision a surrogate candidate who would represent -"
Q: "-- the accomplishments of the Ravenstahl administration , your staff, your team, your vision, to represent your team in the primary?"
A: "No, I don't think so." (Now with a more serious and formal tone.)
Q: "In the general election?"
Q: "So when you say there's someone you envision that you could support, you don't see that person as keeping the Ravenstahl team together to do that?"
A: "Um, first of all, we're speculating, um…"
Q: "You said yes to a series of quest --"
A: "No, no, no, I know. It's -- well, first of all, I don't know. (Laughs.) We're speculating. I don't know what that person may or may not do. You know, so."
Q: "But you have someone in mind?"
A: "I do."
Later, I asked a final followup.
Q: "Is your brother a candidate that you would like to see run for mayor?"
(Reporters' laughter. The mayor shakes head and chuckles.)
(Louder reporters' laughter. The mayor's mother then jokingly chimed in with a loud "no" of her own, gesturing with her arms for added emphasis.)
Delano then added:
Q: "Sorry I opened this."
A: "No, that's okay. I kind of opened it because I answered your question."