Three Frontrunners Have Emerged for Columbia Mayor - DatelineCarolina

Three Frontrunners Have Emerged for Columbia Mayor

Polls open at 7:00 a.m. and close at 7:00 p.m. Polls open at 7:00 a.m. and close at 7:00 p.m.

By Brooks Day

Posted 10:39 a.m. Apr 6, 2010

Tuesday is election day as Columbia voters pick a new mayor two city council members. Seven mayoral candidates have been campaigning since the fall hoping to land the city's biggest job since incumbent Mayor Bob Coble decided not to run for re-election.

There are three candidates at the forefront of the race. Steve Benjamin, Kirkman Finlay, and Steve Morrison have the three largest campaigns. They answered two very basic questions.

1) What would you change if elected mayor?

  • Steve Benjamin: "We've got to create some jobs. Anchored by USC we have 10 colleges and universities here in this region. We've got to start retaining more of the 8,000 students who graduate from colleges and universities here every single year."
  • Kirkman Finlay: "We're going to develop a budget process it's a very open process where everybody who wants input has a choice. We are going to develop a budget that works and move forward with it."
  • Steve Morrison: "I would start with strong and safe. Strong financials. Strong service ethic and a safe city meaning people are safe in their homes and neighborhoods."

2) Why do you think you are most deserving to become the mayor for the city of Columbia?

  • Steve Benjamin: "I'm interested in the message of change and people look at the candidates who have been working the hardest. I feel I have been. The issues I have talked about are very important so I think I will be successful."
  • Kirkman Finlay: "I presented a vision of the city that returns us to fiscal stability, and the will to focus on the development of main street. I think we've got to bring business back to the city of Columbia."
  • Steve Morrison: "I want to be a mayor for all of the people. I'm a deep believer in opportunity for all. I have focused very much on building a community here."

All three men say its going to be a close race. They hope that the voters will vote for the candidate who will serve the city proud.

Polls opened today at 7:00 a.m. and will close at 7:00 p.m. Voters for the District 2 city council representative cannot vote today. A federal judge ordered that election to be postponed. 

Click here for a list of polling places in the city.

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