A strong argument can be made that Sacramento needs a mayor with power.
Large swaths of downtown are blighted. The riverfront isn't the civic showcase it should be. And attempts to build a Kings arena have been disasters.
In each case, it's tough to pinpoint blame because a lot of people had a say, but no one had the last word.
City rules prevent strong elected government, resulting in an intellectual disparity where city staff and private sector leaders are smarter than some of the people casting council votes.
The ensuing leadership vacuum has left residents yearning for much more from their city.
That's why – despite tons of negative publicity – Kevin Johnson was elected Sacramento's mayor in a landslide over a more experienced incumbent.
Be they humble or influential, many people are behind Johnson now based on his promise of something more for Sacramento.
The dude is definitely green. His syntax occasionally fails him, and he sometimes wobbles on the finer points. But he is no dummy.
Aware his popularity will likely never be higher than now – and in office less than two weeks – Johnson is proposing to change the charter to gain more control of city government.
To read the complete column, visit The Sacramento Bee.