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Baltimore candidates for mayor meet in first forum of general election

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Posted at 11:28 PM, Sep 27, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-28 06:17:30-04

Tuesday night, the Canton Community Association held a mayoral forum at the United Evangelical Church in Canton.

A mayoral race that once had more than two dozen candidates was downsized to just three after the April 26 primary.

“I had already read some stuff on all of them so it was about what I expected,” said Mike Brown, a city voter.

Democratic nominee Catherine Pugh, Republican candidate Alan Walden and Green Party candidate Joshua Harris spent the night addressing many of the city's issues, including homelessness, policing and Port Covington.

The city has pledged $660 million to the Port Covington TIF deal utilizing city bonds, which is headed by Under Armor CEO Kevin Plank’s firm Sagamore Development.

“The man has made a remarkable personal and financial commitment to this city and I’d like to have more people like Kevin Plank,” Walden said. 

On Nov. 8, Baltimore City voters will go to the polls to determine who will be the next city mayor.

With just weeks until Election Day, it’s up to the candidates to make their pitches to city voters.

Harris said the deal had room for improvement, meanwhile Pugh said the city could learn from the deal.

“I think it’s a good deal moving forward, but more importantly I think there are lessons we can learn,” Pugh said when asked about the deal.

But in a year where voters tend to shun more ‘establishment’ politics, which message resonated most with voters?

Many said it was Harris.

“I’ve never even heard his name before, but he was good,” said John Sellman.

And at an event for grassroots group “Black Girls Vote” Tuesday evening at Morgan State University, the election and key issues were the focus of a panel discussion, as well as an effort to register students to vote.

The goal, said Rudeejha Smallwood, the student-organizer of the event, said was to "look into what each politician offers. Not only just the surface stuff that they put on the news.” 

On Nov. 8 city voters will go to the polls to determine Baltimore's next mayor.

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