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City Council races head into final stretch
Friday, April 24, 2009 by Austin Monitor
There was a flurry of activity in the mayoral and City Council races Thursday in anticipation of the start of Early Voting on Monday.
The Austin Chronicle endorsed Lee Leffingwell for Mayor, Chris Riley for Place 1, Mike Martinez for Place 2, Bill Spelman for Place 5 and Sheryl Cole for Place 6.
The Chronicle essentially argued that Leffingwell was a better choice than McCracken because he was more mature. In their words, they said the two candidates were like choosing between “your stodgy but reliable dad or your energetic younger brother.”
The Chronicle argued strongly in favor of the stodgy choice: Leffingwell. The editorial team said Leffingwell’s been “the most reliable and thoughtful advocate for protecting core city services and those policies indispensable to citizens’ quality of life: social services, environmental protection, neighborhood programs, public outreach.”
They did not ignore the candidacy of Carole Keeton Strayhorn. “We would add, for the record and as a warning to voters, that either Leffingwell or McCracken would be leagues above former Mayor Carole Keeton Strayhorn,
The Austin American-Statesman has endorsed McCracken, citing his vision and energy, especially in bringing green jobs to
Although the Chronicle said McCracken “offers often more visible enthusiasm,” they pointed out his notorious tendency to change his mind on issues. They concluded “his consistent flaw has been his inconsistency, as his enthusiasms outstrip his judgment.”
The endorsement immediately drew pointed letters from Tim League, co-owner of the Alamo Drafthouse, and Don Pitts, an
Tim League wrote, “in my 13 years as a resident of
The Chronicle endorsed Chris Riley in the other truly-contested race this election: Place 1. The paper lamented that the two candidates, Riley and Perla Cavazos, could not both be elected. In the end, the editors went with Riley, because he’s “the more broadly experienced candidate with extensive, specific knowledge of city programs, as well as applied progressive credentials that he can bring to the council on his first day.”
The Place 1 race appears to be close, and both campaigns released TV ads yesterday to rally voters to their side. Cavazos’ ad was essentially a very subtle attack ad, taking aim at Riley’s emphasis on downtown development. The ad shows Cavazos downtown, where she asks: “From valet parking to $500,000 condos, do you ever wonder if you’re still in
The ad for Chris Riley, Cavazos’ opponent, is much more in the tradition
The public safety unions, which already endorsed Leffingwell, took an opportunity to today to take a shot at McCracken, who continued to say this week that any salary cuts for city employees must include those in public safety. During City Manager Marc Ott’s briefing on the city’s financial position on Wednesday, McCracken once again suggested that police and
The letter, signed by leaders in the police, fire and
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