Even before Mayor Thomas Menino announced his decision not to run for re-election this fall, there were already several people lining up to take his place.
Now that it is official that Menino is stepping aside, the list of potential candidates has considerably grown.
But filling Menino’s shoes will be a difficult task for anyone, in part because Menino has held on to power for so long, political experts said.
“There’s no one on the bench that can easily transition into that role,” said Thomas Whalen, a Boston University politics professor. “It’s strange given the political tradition and history in this state that the coffers are relatively bare when it comes to strong political leaders.”
City Councilor John Connolly announced his candidacy earlier this year and has a big head start on anyone else entering the race.
Other announced candidates include Will Dorcena, of Hyde Park, who previously ran for a City Council seat and Charles Clemons, the founder of TOUCH 106.1 FM.
Suffolk District Attorney Dan Conley has a huge advantage if he decides to run – a campaign account of more than $860,000, according to the Globe.
State Rep. Martin Walsh, of Dorchester, told the Globe Monday that he planned to run if Menino stepped aside.
Candidates interested in getting their name on the ballot must take out nomination papers on or before May 13.
Follow Michael Naughton on Twitter @metrobosmike.