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Napoleon plans to move forward, undaunted by Duggan's strong showing in the polls

Steve Carmody
Michigan Radio

Detroit voters have spoken. Well, at least 15% or so of them who voted in yesterday's primary.

And it will be Mike Duggan versus Benny Napoleon in the race for Mayor.

We were joined by one of the two candidates who will be on the ballot in November running to be the next Mayor of Detroit, Sheriff Benny Napoleon.

“People in the city know me well,” said Napoleon on how he got votes. “They trust me, they trust my message, and I think that they recognize that we need new leadership in this community.”

The second candidate, Mike Duggan, also had a very strong showing.

According to Napoleon, Duggan ran a very strategic and well-financed campaign, but he remains undeterred.

“The primary race and the general race in Detroit are two different types of races. We had an extremely low turnout for the primary so obviously we need to get a larger turnout in November, get our message back out, and makes some adjustments, but we’re moving forward.”

Going forward, Napoleon plans on keeping his campaign message the same, prioritizing public safety, education, and new employment.

Napoleon does not believe race will become an issue for voters.

“I think the citizens of the city of Detroit have demonstrated over time that they will elect a candidate based on what that candidate represents irrespective of race,” Napoleon said.

“We don’t have to talk about [race]. That’s there, it’s visual, everyone knows it, so that’s not really even part of the discussion. We need to focus on the issues. We need to focus on the solutions. We need to focus on making this city a better city,” he said.

Napoleon went on to say that if he is elected mayor, he will follow the directions of the bankruptcy court.

He has been opposed to the emergency manager on “very fundamental grounds” and does not see why Kevyn Orr is needed at this point, but if the federal court decides that Orr should stay, Napoleon said he will address the issue at that time.

Listen to the full interview above.

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