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ELECTION ALBUM // THE 1997 MAYOR'S RACE

Weeks of hearty political discourse ended with David Fischer's re-election over Bill Klein. What happened? Who's in and who's out? Some snapshots:

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EXPENSIVE GARAGE: Downtown is coming back _ without Bay Plaza. Some local entreprenuers sided with Klein, blaming Fischer and city bureaucrats with clinging to a master developer for too long.

CURTSINGER'S GHOST: He left town two years ago, yet former police chief and mayoral candidate Ernest "Curt" Curtsinger haunted this year's campaign. The Klein camp declared: "The name's Bill, not Curt." Maybe voters weren't so sure.

VIOLENCE AND POLITICS: The disturbances last fall ended Fischer's hopes of an easy re-election cruise. Some whites questioned Fischer's grip on the city. Some blacks saw the violence as proof that their neighborhoods had been neglected. Fischer's support proved tough enough to endure.

NO WEDDING BELLS: Fischer wasn't what former Mayor Randy Wedding had in mind when he successfully pushed a "strong mayor" government. Wedding engineered Klein's challenge, but it fell short.

THAT DARNED MUSEUM: Fischer seemed like a Czar in helping create the Florida International Museum. But attendance went south and the city spent $3.9-million to save the Titanic.

IT'S THE ECONOMY, STUP

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