(BALTIMORE – December 6, 2019) – Former Baltimore Mayor Sheila Dixon broke the long-anticipated news yesterday regarding her political future. Is she running for Mayor of Baltimore?
In the last citywide election in 2016, Dixon officially came in second place. Unofficially, she and her supporters believe the election was a sham. There were 1,800 voting irregularities in Baltimore City compared to 200 in the combined 23 other jurisdictions in the State of Maryland. Both the State Board of Elections and the Baltimore City Board of Elections came under fire such that the initial election results were de-certified. This was unprecedented. Due to the advocacy efforts of VOICE (Voters Organized for the Integrity of City Elections), an ad-hoc advocacy group, the initial results were discarded and a new count took place.
|Democratic primary results|
In addition to the voting irregularities, Dixon supporters asserted that there were untrained election judges, polls that closed prematurely, unauthorized letters to ex-offenders precluding them from voting, 8 missing thumb drives containing votes, bags of uncounted votes, thousands of dollars in illegal campaign contributions with zero repercussions, and over 2,000 chicken boxes exchanged for votes by Catherine Pugh.
Moreover, there was an Election Day Riot at Pugh’s West Baltimore campaign office in Walbrook Junction where some of the same people who were given chicken boxes were promised campaign jobs; but, there were no jobs to be had.
To no one’s surprise, this riot was scantily reported by mainstream news outlets.
Long story short, Dixon supporters believe she did not get a fair chance thanks to mainstream media and that the playing field was tilted in Pugh’s favor. Further, attack ads by former Martin O’Malley employee Alex Sanchez did not help her cause. While Pugh enjoyed the comforts of nearly the entire Democratic establishment, Dixon fought a clean fight with less money and still came close to knocking off the then-41st District State Senator.
Whatever the case, Dixon called-in on WOLB 1010 AM yesterday during Bmorenews.com’s weekly radio show and said, “People want to know what I’m doing.” She said she made her decision. “I made it – and it’s going to be announced very soon … in the next week.”
Thus far, the Dixon camp has been mute on the topic.
“I’m looking forward to the announcement from the most qualified candidate out there for Mayor of Baltimore City,” said one of her key supporters, Andy Freeman. “She’s the only one who has the experience and knowledge to hit the ground running on Day 1 and turn this city around.”
On November 15, 2019, the city recorded its 299th and 300th murders. This makes 5 years in a row where Baltimore has had 300 murders.
“The city was never like this when she was Mayor,” added Freeman. “Everyone knows that she did an excellent job in that seat. Further, while she’s had the opportunity to go for other political positions, she declined every one of them. She has always been focused on one thing, and that’s being Mayor of what can be the greatest city in America. All Baltimore needs is the right leader who knows exactly what to do.”
For the past several years, Dixon has continued to be an active member in the community and has helped countless individuals gain employment and careers, including young people who’d otherwise be standing on the corner. Further, in her 9-to-5 at the Maryland Minority Contractors Association, she has assisted many minority-owned contractors get certified, grow their businesses and gain access to contracts.
Many in the world of minority contractors believe that too many non-Whites in a majority Black city still do not get a fair share of the pie, despite a high percentage of elected officials who are Black. Dixon also has a solid reputation for helping people navigate the bureaucratic red-tape of City Hall for everything from zoning issues to water bills.
On yesterday’s radio show, Dixon said she was floored when she learned recently that the City of Baltimore failed to collect $2.3 million from Ritz Carlton Residences, located at the Inner Harbor.
At present, a number of people have filed for Mayor. As of 12 noon today, filed Republican candidates include Catalina Byrd, William G. Herd, David Anthony Wiggins, and Shannon Wright.
Democratic candidates who have filed for Mayor include: Carlmichael Stokey Cannady, Lou Catelli, Michael Douglas Jenson, Ralph E. Johnson, Jr., James Hugh Jones, II, Yolanda Pulley, Dante C. Swinton, Rikki Vaughn, Frederick Ware-Newsome, State Senator Mary Washington.
Of those filed, Washington is the only one who currently holds office. Non-filed candidates expected to run include Interim Mayor Bernard Young, Interim City Council President Brandon Scott, and former Deputy Attorney General of Maryland Thiruvendran Vignarajah.
Of Mary Washington’s mayoral campaign, Freeman said he’s surprised. When asked why, he replied, “She told me towards the end of August that she did ‘not have the knowledge nor the experience to be mayor’ and that for now, she just wanted ‘to be the mayor of the 41st district.'”
The two talked when Washington approached the development firm where Freeman was employed to learn more about how development projects actually work.
In any event, next week’s announcement could bring joy to a lot of people. Meanwhile, Dixon supporters can continue to take delight in what looks like a Super Bowl year for the Ravens. Who knows what 2020 might bring? With the Ravens’ successes under quarterback Lamar Jackson’s leadership along with a long overdue political turnaround under the right mayor, Baltimore might just be on the verge of a renaissance.