VOL. 126 | NO. 142 | Friday, July 22, 2011
4 Council Members - All 3 City Court Judges To Run Unopposed In Oct. Elections
By Bill Dries
Four incumbent Memphis City Council members and all three incumbent City Court Judges were effectively re-elected at the Thursday, July 21, noon deadline for candidates to file their qualifying petitions for the Oct. 6 Memphis ballot.
One contender drawn out of a city council district by a new set of district lines said he was unfairly disqualified when he filed to run in the new council district his precinct was moved into.
Among the last-minute filers Thursday was Michael Steven Moore for the District 7 council seat. The only open seat on the council had 14 contenders at the deadline. Moore is the son of Barbara Swearengen Ware who resigned in June after being on suspension since last year because of an official misconduct charge.
Filing even later than Moore was Leandrea Taylor in the same council race as well as Scott Banbury.
Jesse K. Jeff had planned to run for the district 1 city council seat at the start of the election season. But when the council approved a new set of district lines this week he was no longer living in the Frayser-Raleigh district. His precinct in Frayser was one of several that are part of council district 7.
So Jeff pulled a qualifying petition for district 7 and got double the 25 signatures required on the petition. Election Commission staffers verify that those signing the petitions live in the district and are voters. Candidates usually get many more than 25 signatures to compensate for those who are neither or are one but not the other.
Jeff was called by Election Commission staffers an hour after Thursday’s deadline and he says he was told he only had 23 qualified signatures and wouldn’t be on the ballot. Among the signatures disqualified was that of Jeff’s wife who lives with him at the same address in the new district.
“They said that they lived in District 1. How does the election commission not know that we are now in District 7 and not in District 1 anymore?” Jeff said. “I’m definitely going to appeal.”
Minutes before the deadline, mayoral contender Leo Awgowhat was looking for a final signature to qualify for the office he sought in the 2009 special election. He made the ballot along with eight other challengers to incumbent Memphis Mayor A C Wharton Jr.
Council members Harold Collins, Reid Hedgepeth, Jim Strickland and Myron Lowery are all running unopposed in Oct. Andrew Rome Withers filed near the deadline to challenge Lowery but his qualifying petition was disqualified for insufficient signatures.
All three city court judges, Tarik Sugarmon, Earnestine Hunt Dorse and Jayne Chandler also had no opposition.
All 12 incumbent council members filed for re-election, representing the largest bid for re-election by incumbents in the 43-year history of the mayor-council form of government.
All of the contenders have until noon Thursday, July 28, to withdraw if they wish.
Here is the full list of contenders:
JAMES R BARBEE
CARLOS F BOYLAND
EDMUND H FORD, SR.
JAMES HARVEY, SR.
ROBERT “PRINCE MONGO” HODGES
KENNETH B ROBINSON
A C WHARTON, JR.
CITY COURT JUDGE, DIVISION 1
EARNESTINE HUNT DORSE
CITY COURT JUDGE, DIVISION 2
TARIK B SUGARMON
CITY COURT JUDGE, DIVISION 3
CITY COUNCIL DISTRICT 1
KENDRICK D SNEED
CITY COUNCIL DISTRICT 2
CITY COUNCIL DISTRICT 3
CITY COUNCIL DISTRICT 4
LOUIS MATTHEW MORGANFIELD, III
MICHELLE E SMITH
CITY COUNCIL DISTRICT 5
CITY COUNCIL DISTRICT 6
EDMUND FORD, JR.
RHODA MAYS STIGALL
SHARON A WEBB
CITY COUNCIL DISTRICT 7
RAYMOND A BURSI
ERSKINE B GILLESPIE
MICHAEL STEVEN MOORE
DEREK D RICHARDSON
COBY V SMITH
LEANDREA RENE TAYLOR
DAVID W VINCIARELLI
CITY COUNCIL SUPER DISTRICT 8, POS 1
CITY COUNCIL SUPER DISTRICT 8, POS 2
ROSALYN R NICHOLS
CITY COUNCIL SUPER DISTRICT 8, POS 3
CITY COUNCIL SUPER DISTRICT 9, POS 1
CITY COUNCIL SUPER DISTRICT 9, POS 2
GEORGE SHEA FLINN, III
CITY COUNCIL SUPER DISTRICT 9, POS 3
CITY COURT CLERK