Tuesday, April 30, 2013

The inaugural Mayoral Power Rankings

(Updated, May 2) Anthony Foxx has decided not to seek a third term as Charlotte mayor so he can spend more time with family. Looks like he'll have to do so in Washington, as Secretary of Transportation. Good for him.

That means Charlotte will elect a new mayor in November, and the jostling has begun. One candidate, Republican Edwin Peacock, already has declared. One possible candidate already has said he won't support another possible candidate for interim mayor. Game on.

Who will be celebrating on Election Night? Your Charlotte Observer editorial board is here for you with our Mayoral Power Rankings - the candidates we think have the best shot to be Charlotte's 56th mayor. (The 55th, an interim, will be appointed by the City Council if/when Foxx is confirmed for transportation secretary.)

The caveats: These are not endorsements. They're not necessarily who we think should have the best chance in November. Expect the list to change as folks decide they want in or out of the race, and as the campaign heats up.

Also, tell us your thoughts. Who'd we leave out? Who should be ranked higher or lower?

The inaugural rankings (updated, May 2):

1. Dan Clodfelter - D: Longtime state senator has crossover appeal, but "expanding the sales tax" isn't a great platform these days. If a white male can still win the job in Charlotte, he's the one.
2. Edwin Peacock - R: The highest ranking Republican and a former City Council member. Also has crossover appeal, but would it have killed him to wait a week to declare? 
3. Becky Carney - D: State rep and former county commission vice chairman has grassroots standing and support. Would be a force with the female vote, and many males, too.
4. Patrick Cannon - D: Mayor pro-tem has been waiting for this opportunity. Has Graham's strengths, but more controversial.
5. Malcolm Graham - D: State senator and former City Council member would prefer Mel Watt's congressional seat, but that's if Watt is approved for the Federal Housing Finance Agency. If he decides on mayor instead, Graham has strong name recognition - at least among older voters - and an extensive network of support. 
6. John Lassiter - R: Smart and earnest former councilman. If he decides to run, he shoots up this list. But he probably won't.
7. Michael Barnes - D: If City Council member runs, he'll regret saying this about the homeless in 2012: "I have no interest in trying to fix problems that are unfixable." 
8. David Howard - D: City Council member is still relatively new to Charlotte political scene. But so was the guy who’s mayor now.
9. Eric Davis – I: Former school board chairman could be formidable, but no one suggests he’s running.
10. Jennifer Roberts - D: Strong name recognition but tells the O she’d only consider the interim job. Rocky finish as county commission chair.
Others receiving votes: Former City Council member Pat Mumford, City Council member Andy Dulin, former county commissioner Harold Cogdell, school board member Tim Morgan.



Wiley Coyote said...

Let's not put a person in the Mayoral position like Barnes who speaks the truth and facts of the matter.

To do so would be to go against the Democrat/Socialist sheeple directives.

cmsparent2010 said...

The fact that Michael Barnes can face the harsh realities of life and in politics is what should make him an attractive candidate. A pie in the sky Mayor with rose color glasses does no good if he cannot accept the facts of life.

Veronica said...

"If a white male can still win the job..."

And yet if a white male wrote that statement in the Observer forums he'd probably have his comment removed by the editor.