Fast forward to 2010. Another big ideas (and big budgets!) mayor, Lois Frankel, is coming to the end of her second term and seeking a way to keep her job. Her chosen vehicle is the city's charter review commission, which is a 5-member board created to review and suggest changes to the city's system of government. In January she stacked the commission with four of her devotees who are said to be impartially weighing the benefits of a Frankel third term.
It is not late for Mayor Frankel to tuck the burst trial balloon in her pocket and, with dignity, serve out her last year as mayor. She can always run again in the future after sitting out a term if she wishes, albeit without the powers of incumbency that make a low-turnout reelection a formality.