November 29, 2005
One week from today, Augusta voters will elect a new mayor. News 12 is on your side to show you how both candidates are preparing for the runoff.
“I think there’s really an electricity surrounding this election,” said Deke Copenhaver.
“It’s like the playoffs, regular season is over. We finished first, but this is a whole new ballgame,” said Willie Mays.
A new ballgame now in overtime, both candidates are kicking campaigning into high gear.
“Well actually I’ve spent the whole morning on the phone calling voters and drumming up support and encouraging people to get out and vote,” Copenhaver said.
The Copenhaver camp is prepping for a pep rally. Meanwhile, we found Willie Mays delivering a proclamation to retired school teachers. He says being mayor is a tough job, especially during a runoff.
“You still have to do the job, that’s what you take the oath to do and you have to find the time to campaign,” Mays said.
But there was no shortage of his supporters outside early voting precincts, even handing out tags saying ‘I voted, but was not paid,’ fueled by comments reportedly made by State Representative Sue Bermiester.
And Copenhaver says while Bermiester is listed as one of his contributors, that doesn’t mean he supports her views.
“She supported me as a private citizen prior to these comments coming out. She’s denied the comments. I’m really, that’s not the way I feel. I am trying to get through to all the voters,” Copenhaver said.
Despite their different approach to government, there’s one thing both candidates say they agree on, that being a clear choice that voters have to make.
“Do we want progressive change or do we want to continue on with the status quo,” Copenhaver said.
“I’ve heard the accusation, do we keep the status quo or do we turn back to the past. And I counter that by saying that we’ve been able to change every generation that we’ve represented,” Mays said.