COLORADO SPRINGS — The two candidates running in the Colorado Springs mayoral runoff announced key endorsements of their campaigns Thursday.
Yemi Mobolade held a news conference with Sallie Clark on the steps of City Hall. Clark secured the third highest vote tally in the 12-way race just behind Wayne Williams.
Meanwhile, Williams announced the support of five current city council members. Those members include Randy Helms, Lynette Crow-Iverson, Dave Donelson, Mike O'Malley, and David Leinweber.
Mobolade and Clark told reporters they have a lot in common when it comes to their leadership styles and their plans to address issues facing the city.
"His moral character, his values, the things that I embody I see in him," Clark said. "And so, I'm privileged to be able to and honored to support him."
Mobolade said he was motivated to seek Clark's endorsement by Abraham Lincoln and his famous cabinet of rivals.
"I respect her, I have tremendous respect for what she's done, her love for this community, and what she's trying to do. And she in return has tremendous respect for me. And together it just made sense," said.
Williams already enjoys the support of Mayor John Suthers and the city's police and fire fighters professional associations.
"The fact that all 4 of the city council leaders; president, president pro-tem, utility chair, and vice chair have all endorsed me means a lot to me because that's the group I'm going to have to work with," Williams said.
Williams said he was not surprised by Clark's endorsement of Mobolade given his public disagreement with her over the city's new water storage and annexation rule.
"I think everyone has the ability to make their own decisions over who they choose to support. I'm honored to have e the support of the majority of the city council and the city council is who the mayor has to work with.
UCCS Political Science Professor Josh Dunn said endorsement can sway undecided voters in a close race.
"In a tight race, I think they can really matter particularly for a challenger, I think they're very important."
Even without an incumbent in the race, Dunn views Mobolade as the challenger because of how well known Williams is in local political circles.
"Local races tend to be low-turnout and so, the more endorsements you get and the more you can draw on other people's email lists and also their voice of support to try to get people to the polls, that can make a significant difference as well."
Ballots were mailed out to voters earlier this week. The deadline to return ballots by mail is Tuesday, May 9, a week before Election Day. Ballots can be dropped off in person any of the secure drop box locations by 7:00 p.m. on May 16.
A runoff debate between Mobolade and Williams will take place on Sunday, April 30 from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., at The Garden Pavilion at Penrose House. KOAA, News5 anchor Rob Quirk will act as moderator, joined by panelists Vince Bzdek, Executive Editor of The Gazette, and Alasyn Zimmerman, KOAA, News5 anchor.
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