Mayor Paul Soglin and Bugs Bunny in 1977

Madison Mayor Paul Soglin and Bugs Bunny discuss city government in 1977 in his office. Soglin. After leaving the job in 1979, he served again as mayor from 1989-1997, and from 2011 to today. 


This State Journal article ran on the front page Dec. 3, 1977:

Madison Mayor Paul Soglin cleared the decks for a long, wide-open 1979 mayoral race Friday with the announcement he will not seek re-election to a fourth term.

Soglin, who was first elected mayor in 1973 by 3,400 votes over incumbent William Dyke, said he has no immediate political plans. ...

Soglin said the desire to do some writing about his political experiences is the principal reason for his decision to leave office — and declined to give any other reasons. ...

“I’ve looked at what I’ve done as an experiment,” he said. “I think I’ve learned some valuable lessons — and I’d like to sit back and critique it.”

City Council President Betty Smith praised Soglin as “an excellent mayor” and pointed to the State Street Mall, Capitol Concourse and the city’s headway in developing mass transit as a few of the top accomplishments of Soglin’s three terms.

At his press conference, Soglin said he has abandoned the thought of another political office race for the immediate future. But, he added, “Nothing is final about this except for on thing: In 1979 I won’t be mayor. I can’t imagine I’ll stay out of politics for the rest of my life.”

As far as an income source after he leaves office, Soglin said, “I have a law degree from the UW — and that’s worth something. But I have no intention of getting in a big law practice.”

Before leaving office, Soglin said he intends to propose the mayor’s salary be increased “substantially” and the term be expanded to four years.