Now that Richardson's mayoral election is over, there are a few loose ends to tie up.
Monday night, Amir Omar made a gracious exit after serving four years on Richardson's City Council. But in losing the Richardson mayor's race, he has made it very hard on himself to have a future in Richardson politics. The establishment turned its back on him. In return, he turned his back on them. The standing ovation he received after his farewell doesn't change that history.
During the campaign, Omar gravitated to becoming the de facto candidate of the tea party, whether any group going by that name officially endorsed him or not, whether he himself embraced the notion or not. Unfortunately for him and his future, the tea party hasn't been able to elect dog catcher in this town. Omar was their best candidate by far in three elections and even he came up far short.
Maybe the city council will be magnanimous and offer him a seat on a board or commission, and he'd probably be humble and dedicated enough to accept, but somehow I don't see that happening. The attacks on his character were too vicious, too personal, for a "let bygones be bygones" attitude to prevail after this election. Still, stranger things have happened.
Is there an opening up the ladder? He didn't help himself with the country club Republicans in this election. As for the tea party Republicans, he could recreate himself as a full-fledged tea party candidate, then challenge an existing officeholder from the right in a GOP primary. But think of that. Is it even possible to imagine anyone getting to the right of, say, Stefani Carter? Or outfundraising Pete Sessions? Or attacking Tiger Mother Angie Chen Button?
Is there an opening elsewhere? Is Omar young enough to pack his bags and move away from Richardson to work his way up through the ranks again in another city? Regardless here or there, he would need to clean up his biography and business résumé, which was picked on to devastating effect by the Richardson Coalition PAC and not just them. Rodger Jones of The Dallas Morning News expressed doubts about Omar's claimed business experience. Omar has some damage control to do if he wants a future in politics anywhere.
If he can put aside electoral ambitions on his own behalf, he would probably be both welcomed and excellent working for another officeholder. A stint in Austin or even Washington, D.C., working on a politician's staff or for a lobbying group could do wonders for his own next run for public office. Will Omar be satisfied leaving politics and throwing himself fully into his work with charities and non-profits? Who knows? He himself may not be sure what he wants to do next. But any organization that can recruit him is getting a dynamo.
All that's certain is that there will be another act for Amir Omar. He has too much talent and energy to just fade away. I just don't have the crystal ball that can give me any confidence in predicting just what his future might hold.