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Firefighters endorse Watson for mayor

Tuesday, July 26, 2022 by Jo Clifton

Austin Firefighters Association President Bob Nicks announced Monday that the group was endorsing Kirk Watson for mayor. Watson, a former mayor and state senator, also has the endorsement of the city’s EMS Association PAC. The Austin Police Association has not made an endorsement in the race. Ken Casaday, president of the APA, told the Austin Monitor he was not sure whether the police union would endorse in the race, noting that some candidates do not want an endorsement from the police. In a press release, the Watson campaign quoted Nicks as saying, “Austin is at a crossroads. We’re facing big challenges, especially those relating to affordability, transportation and public safety. It’s critical our next mayor is pragmatic, has common sense and an ability to get things done. We need a mayor who can address our needs on day one.” The firefighters and EMS associations also endorsed Chito Vela, who won the City Council District 4 seat in January. In 2020, firefighters supported incumbent Council members Greg Casar, Leslie Pool and Alison Alter, as well as the unsuccessful candidacy of David Chincanchan in the District 2 race to take the seat previously held by Delia Garza. (Council Member Vanessa Fuentes won that race.) The largest remaining union to announce an endorsement is AFSCME, which has been pushing the city to raise the starting wage to $22 per hour.

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