MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Things are heating up in local political campaigns with just 25 days remaining before the start of early voting in the Shelby County general election – along with state and federal primaries. The two hottest races remain those for district attorney and county mayor, and the mudslinging is getting intense.
In the D.A.’s race for example, Democratic challenger Steve Mulroy is pushing for change in the prosecutor’s office, which he says is rated the worst in the state. And last week, Mulroy touted a poll commissioned by his campaign showing him ahead of Republican incumbent Amy Weirich by 12 percentage points.
Weirich responded by calling the poll bogus and a desperate attempt to raise campaign funds. Weirich also alleges that Mulroy’s platform is built around freeing criminals from jail, and she linked him to the Defund of the police movement. That charge appears be part of the Republican playbook.
GOP mayoral candidate Worth Morgan also uses the term in accusing incumbent Mayor Lee Harris of cutting nearly $5 million from the sheriff’s department budget. For his part, Harris is closely aligning himself with other Democrats, and even took to the streets last week to protest the visit by former president Donald Trump.
Harris is banking on the fact that Democratic voters outnumber Republicans in Shelby County. And assuming turnout is decent, his party will carry the day. But as always, voters will have the last word.