UPDATE — Starting in 2014, Loretta Scott will be City Council president. City Council members unanimously elected her to the position during a vote this afternoon. Dana Miller was reelected as vice president of City Council, and that vote was also unanimous.
Members of City Council are expected to meet this afternoon to select a president and vice president for 2014. Who gets picked should tell us something about how this Council will work with incoming mayor Lovely Warren.
Loretta Scott is the odds-on favorite for president, and she has been taking more of a leadership role in the most recent Council meetings. Vice president could be interesting. Current VP Dana Miller wants to hold on to the job, but there are hints that Council could go with Matt Haag. Haag supported incumbent Tom Richards in the mayor’s race, but he’s politically less divisive than some other members. He’s also well-liked and a hard worker.
A Haag choice could also be seen as a breadcrumb or an olive branch to Richards supporters. Miller backed Warren, as did Scott and Adam McFadden. Mike Patterson is brand new to Council — he was sworn-in Tuesday to take Warren’s seat — but he has ties to David Gantt, so he’s likely to be solidly behind Warren, too.
This is a very divided Council, in quite a few ways. And it may be overreaching, but I think the VP pick could give us an indication whether Council is going to actively try to bridge those divides or not.
If you’re tempted to look at these titles as simply ceremonial — don’t. The fight over them has turned ugly in the past and some of the hurts from past leadership battles linger, affecting Council to this day.