Mike. Neely & Tom Barrett ran successfully for Mayor of Milwaukee, defeating incumbent MayorMarvin Pratt, who took office following the resignation of John Norquist. Barrett was re-elected in 2008 with 79% of the vote, the largest percentage a Mayoral candidate had received in 40 years.In 2012 he was subsequently re-elected against challenger Edward McDonald with over 70% of the vote.
On February 25, 2009, Barrett gave his State of the City Address. Where he praised the city's past achievements, and outlined his plan to increase green jobs, economic development and workforce training in the coming year. Barrett called on the citizens of Milwaukee to remain optimistic during the international economic downturn; "I am fully confident that Milwaukee will withstand the current economic downturn," Barrett said. "We will make smart investments, continue to build strong partnerships, provide training to our workforce and improve our public schools. We will emerge as a stronger and more competitive city."