Las Vegas Mayor Goodman reluctantly says goodbye

By CRISTINA SILVA | May 29, 2011 | 10:12 AM EDT

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman surveyed the piles of memorabilia spilling from his City Hall office: the bowling ball disguised as an olive, the diamond-studded bottle of gin. It all must go, but he can't bring himself to pack.

The self-proclaimed happiest mayor in the universe is unhappily being pushed out of office.

After three terms, Goodman must relinquish City Hall. Early voting to replace the term-limited mayor started Saturday and the general election will be held June 7. Facing off on the ballot to are his wife of five decades and a county commissioner unlucky enough to have a last name other than Goodman.

No matter the election outcome, the changing of the guard will be the end of an era for Las Vegas and its flamboyant mayor.