VOL. 133 | NO. 147 | Thursday, July 26, 2018
Chamber PAC Backs Both County Mayor Candidates
By Bill Dries
The Jobs Political Action Committee of the Greater Memphis Chamber is backing both candidates in the race for Shelby County mayor on the Aug. 2 ballot and skipped the race for the District 7 seat on the Shelby County Commission – arguably the most competitive of the 13 commission races.
In a letter to chamber members released Tuesday, July 24, the PAC announced it will support both Republican nominee David Lenoir and Democratic nominee Lee Harris for mayor.
“Based upon the written responses to questions and oral interviews, both candidates were deemed qualified and were supported by the Jobs PAC,” reads the letter to chamber members.
The support includes contributions to the campaigns from the PAC fund, which comes from donations but not chamber dues.
The list of candidates backed in Shelby County Commission races is notable for the one race it makes no call in – the District 7 contest between Sam Goff and Tami Sawyer.
Sawyer, the Democratic nominee, led the Take ’Em Down 901 movement calling for the removal of Confederate monuments from city parks. Goff, the Republican nominee, came to the race from heading the Midtown Community Development Corp.
All five commission incumbents seeking re-election get the nod from the PAC as well as contenders Racquel Collins, David Bradford, Mick Wright, Michael Whaley, Mickell Lowery, Edmund Ford Jr. and Brandon Morrison. The Jobs PAC also supports Ford Canale in the special election for Memphis City Council, but makes no calls in the special judicial races, Shelby County Schools board race or the countywide races on the ballot.
Meanwhile, 7,524 citizens voted early Tuesday for a total of 46,656 since the voting period began July 13. Early voting ends Saturday, July 28.
The total through 10 days compares to 57,437 early voters through 10 days of early voting in the same election cycle in 2010 and 50,864 in 2014. The 2010 and 2014 early voting periods featured one Downtown site open on the first two days followed by 20 other sites. The current early voting period began with five sites open on the first three days of the period followed by 22 more sites.