Cranley, Simpson, & Richardson will square off for Mayor of Cincinnati

CINCINNATI, Ohio (WKRC) - The field is officially set as three Cincinnati Democrats will face off in May’s primary trying to become Cincinnati’s next mayor.

Tuesday night, February 21, Mayor John Cranley formally kicked off his re-election campaign in East Price Hill at the Incline Theater to a room of supporters.

"As mayor, I have worked hard to keep my word. I have made the tough calls when necessary to do what's right, even when it has been unpopular,” said Cranley.

Cranley spoke of the need to increase bus service adopting a of .5 cent sales tax.

"If re-elected we will continue to work to make our city safer and more inclusive to bring jobs to Cincinnati, to reduce poverty, to repair our infrastructure and to build even better neighborhoods,” said Cranley.

Cranley only mentioned the streetcar once and criticized the previous administration for prioritizing the streetcar over neighborhood investments. During his speech Cranley called his allies on council while calling out others indirectly by saying he makes the tough calls.

“They’d rather stay in their bubble of groupthink supporters and not work those they disagree with,” said Cranley.

Cranley is going up against Cincinnati City Councilwoman Yvette Simpson and Rob Richardson, the Former Chair of the UC Board of Trustees.

In response to Cranley’s formal re-election announcement Simpson provided this statement:

“What people will hear tonight is more of the same from John Cranley, who inherited a growing vibrant city and has spent four years creating divides instead of building bridges, benefiting himself and special interests rather than everyday Cincinnatians, and offering no ideas on how we position our city for inclusive growth over the next decade. Cincinnati deserves a leader with vision, an inclusive leader who can represent all of Cincinnati, and a public servant who prioritizes public interest above her own.”

Cincinnati deserves a leader with vision, an inclusive leader who can represent all of Cincinnati

Richardson said he was not interested in the petty politics of City Hall, "They've been fighting each other and it hasn't been focused on the people and I think the people can see that and understand that,” said Richardson.

Richardson said he was concerned about the lack of access to public transportation in the city.

"They are 75,000 people right now in the city of Cincinnati who can't get to their jobs right now and there are communities that haven't been able to participate in the growth we've had,” said Richardson.

The primary takes place May 2, 2017. The top two vote-getters will square off in November.

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