Forum Features Candidates for Salt Lake City Mayor

Forum Features Candidates for Salt Lake City Mayor

Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes

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Richard Piatt Reporting Salt Lake City's next mayor will face a lot of challenges. But right now, the challenge for the candidates seeking that job is to get the voters' attention.

Tonight a forum let candidates do that.

There are nine candidates running for Salt Lake City mayor. Eight of them appeared at the U of U law school tonight. It was an important first look for people who don't know a lot of them.

There is fierce competition in this group. All of the candidates are very involved in city neighborhoods and politics. Some, like Jenny Wilson--whose father held the office--have a strong sense of history.

"A progressive voice with a proven record, but also someone who's worked administrative matters and who will hit the ground running as mayor for Salt Lake City," Wilson said.

Others, like those who have been or who are currently on the city council, tout leadership qualities.

Nancy Saxton is one of them. "I'm never going to be one of those insiders, one of those power brokers, because I listen to you, the taxpayer," she told the crowd.

Keith Christensen said, "My civic experience and my business experience -- successful in both -- make me best qualified to manage the affairs of Salt Lake City."

"I have a record of problem solving in government on both the city and state level, and working across party lines," said Dave Buhler.

There is also experience in state government. Ralph Becker is the current house minority leader.

"I don't think it stops with just managing the city. I think it also goes toward looking at what this city can become," he said.

Meghan Holbrook also is a Democrat and the past party chair.

"I will work with everyone. I will form coalitions, and we will have a positive attitude in this city," she said.

Dr. J.P. Hughes, a retired proctologist, is a Republican.

"I think the best way to work with people is to have civility, and we don't have that," Hughes remarked.

John Renteria has strong feelings about the economy of neglected neighborhoods.

In his opinion, "We need to do something about improving the west side so it is much more welcoming."

Those are just a few quick remarks from the candidates who showed up tonight.

Voters have a lot of choices this year. This field of candidates will be narrowed to two in the runoff September 11. Then it'll be a tough fight to the November election.

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