Bloomington's Secretary of State Candidate/Mayor John Fernandez was on the road once again last week raising money. He added Terre Haute to the list of Indiana cities he's journeyed to in search of cash just since mid-July. He's made the papers in three - Indianapolis, Muncie and Terre Haute.

According to the Terre Haute Tribune-Star, Fernandez last Tuesday called for "regional relationships and stronger state leadership" during a "fund-raising visit" to that city. But when asked about the proposed Interstate 69 in a regional city that was snubbed by Fernandez' Democratic leadership buddies in Indianapolis, he ducked and ran.

"This highway isn't a panacea, it's a tool," he waffled, criticizing discussions focused on how a new-terrain highway will change the region. "We shouldn't wait for the highway to be built. If we're concerned about regional impact, we should start talking about that right now."

As usual, the mayor's frame of reference is limited to that of state power brokers and those who finance their mischief. If he was a leader, he'd be talking with people in Bloomington and Terre Haute who have been talking for years about the regional impacts a new-terrain I-69 route will have on both communities.

The public in both cities have studied the issue extensively, discussed it in-depth and reached the conclusion that a new-terrain route will harm the character and economies of both. But Fernandez doesn't talk or listen to the people. They don't have money or power, he thinks.