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On to November
Cannon sweeps aside Mitchell in mayoral primary
Published Wednesday, September 11, 2013 7:29 pm
by Herbert L. White

Tuesday’s primary election pretty much  lived up to modest expectations in Charlotte.

Charlotte Mayor Pro Tem Patrick Cannon talks to supporters on Sept. 10 at St. Mark’s United Methodist Church on Clanton Road. Cannon, who defeated District 2 council representative James Mitchell, Gary Dunn and Lucille Puckett in the Democratic mayoral primary, will take on Republican candidate Edwin Peacock III in November.

Mayoral favorites Patrick Cannon and Edwin Peacock won with ease, although City Council member James Mitchell gave Cannon a spirited run for the Democratic nomination.

Cannon, the council’s mayor pro tem, carried 56 percent of the ballots in unofficial returns despite a barrage of mailings and advertisements from Mitchell, who campaigned as the successor to former mayor Anthony Foxx’s legacy.

Foxx is now U.S. secretary of transportation.

Peacock, a former council member, earned 93 percent of Republican votes to easily sweep aside challenger David Rice. Peacock pledged to work beyond partisan labels for the good of the city.

“We live in the greatest city in America, in my humble opinion,” he said. “ But in order to stay great, we need to tackle our challenges head on by bringing people together to move Charlotte forward.  Political bickering must be a thing of the past because it's holding our city back.  We must restore a culture of civility to city government that is razor focused on economic growth and accountability to Charlotte's taxpayers.”

Two City Council district races will likely result in run-offs because no candidate exceeded the threshold of 40 percent of votes cast. Al Austin and Brenda Stevenson were the top vote-getters in District 2, which Mitchell represents. Austin, a fundraiser at Johnson C. Smith University, earned 34.2 percent of the vote while Stevenson, a minister, finished with 31.6 percent.

The winner will take on Republican challenger Daryl Broome in November.

 District 4 faces a similar scenario. Greg Phipps barely missed the 40 percent mark at 39.9 percent of ballots cast, while Wil Russell finished second at 20.8 percent and Leonard Richardson was third at 19.8.

The winner in the heavily-Democratic district will succeed Michael Barnes, who paced the at-large field with 23 percent of the vote. He’ll be joined on the Democratic ticket by former assistant city manager Vi Lyles, who is mounting her first campaign for elected office, and incumbent representatives David Howard and Claire Fallon. 

Lyles and Howard each earned 19 percent of the vote, followed by Fallon at 12 percent. Incumbent Beth Pickering, who voted for the CityLynx Gold Line and $816 million capital improvement plan earlier this year, lost her bid for re-election.



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