Sunday, March 11, 2001

Dems endorse slate for council

By Howard Wilkinson
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        The Cincinnati Democratic Committee (CDC) met Saturday to endorse a slate of nine City Council candidates — four incumbents and five challengers — without the fireworks party leaders had feared.

        About 170 CDC members met in a union hall in South Cumminsville and voted to endorse candidates picked by a 17-member nominating committee.

        Mayor Charlie Luken was endorsed unanimously as the Democratic Party's candidate in this year's mayoral election - Cincinnati's first direct election for mayor in more than 75 years.

        Incumbents Alicia Reece, Paul Booth and Minette Cooper were endorsed for re-election.

        But it was the five non-incumbent candidates who stirred the most interest.They were picked from 14 prospective candidates interviewed by the nominating committee.

        The non-incumbent candidates are David Pepper, a lawyer and son of Procter & Gamble chairman John Pepper; David Crowley, a Mount Adams businessman; Jane Anderson, a political science professor who lost in her first council bid two years ago; Lawra Baumann, a Fifth Third Bank vice president; and Akiva Freeman, a former City Council aide who works in real estate management.

        Party leaders feared that supporters of some of the prospective candidates would make floor nominations to substitute their candidates for the committee's choices. But that did not happen.

        “At first I thought we had a chance of winning seven seats on council this year, but now I can see us winning all nine,” CDC chairman Les Mann said.

        Neither the Republican Party nor the Charter Committee is close to putting together a council slate, and neither has yet found a candidate for mayor.

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