In Frank Jackson fashion, the Cleveland mayor took the stage after winning a third term and with a self-deprecating smile told the room full of supporters, “Well, I guess it is what it is.”

Jackson jumped out to an early 2-to-1 lead over challenger Ken Lanci, a margin that held up through the night, even still ever cautious he waited until almost all votes were in before declaring victory.

“I’ll be happy to get back to governing,” Jackson said after his acceptance speech. “My preference is always to govern.”

Jackson becomes only the third Cleveland mayor to be elected to a third term, why he wanted the chance to continue, he said, was simple. “Because we’re not quite there yet. We’re well positioned but we still have some work to do and that work is about how do we institutionalize this pathway to success.”

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Jackson said he wants to lay the framework where success is something that is not so much celebrated in future leaders but demanded.

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