Saturday, December 17, 2011

Bowers and Lea comment on Rasoul’s run for Mayor

Mayor David Bowers’ reaction to Sam Rasoul’s announcement in a phone call Friday was one of acceptance. He said, “I get challenges every day and this is just another interesting challenge I’ve got to deal with.”

He referenced the nameplate on his desk in the Mayor’s office that reads “this chair belongs to the people.” Bowers’ point was that it reminds him and everyone that “it’s up to the people of Roanoke to make a decision … I don’t take the people for granted or assume a bed of roses.”

It is up the public on who they want as Mayor and “I’ve always found Roanokers to take that very genuinely.”

Some question Rasoul’s move from Botetourt County to the city questioning whether he actually lives in the city. Rasoul confirmed he has moved to the city but didn’t say where he lives. Bowers’ supporters are calling him a carpetbagger.

His employer Kissito Healthcare is headquartered in Valleypointe just outside the city limits. They provide post-acute care for the elderly funded by private and government grants. They also partner with the Ministries of Health in Ethiopia and Uganda.

Sherman Lea in a phone call Thursday commented on Rasoul’s candidacy saying that he was surprised by Rasoul’s announcement but “being in politics as long as I have – I wouldn’t underestimate his ability to get people out to vote. That is what [firehouse] primaries are – get people out to vote.”

Lea thinks that the Mayor needs to be vigilante – “[Rasoul] has shown through the last election that he beat Bob Goodlatte in the city. I’m surprised by it but I hope that nobody would underestimate him. That’s the thing about politics – you can’t underestimate your opponent.”

Lea again reiterated that he is not running for Mayor and will seek another term for city council. His retirement from Regional Director for the Department of Corrections has had no bearing on changing that decision.

He said the firehouse primary would be held February 11 at William Fleming High School.

Posted By Valerie Garner

Categories: Election 2012, Elections, Politics, Roanoke City Politics

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