CLOVIS, NM -- Two candidates are trying to get voters to elect them to be the next mayor of Clovis.
Mayor Gayla Brumfield has held the post since 2008. She believes several things should help her get re-elected. She points to quality-of-life improvements like the city's parks projects, job creation, and the expansion of Cannon Air Force Base.
David Lansford served three previous terms. He's opposing Brumfield. He says he's running again because he doesn't believe citizens are being given the respect and regard they deserve.
"I firmly believe the No. 1 job of any elected official is to listen to the voice of the people," Lansford said.
"More than just listen, you go ahead and take action, and that's what we've done," said Brumfield.
One issue in this election is Lansford's personal beliefs on President Obama. He has come under attack for his views expressed on blogs, including ATLAH Media, that President Obama is not a U.S. citizen under requirements of the Constitution. He also wrote that President Obama was a CIA operative and on a secretive mission to destroy the Constitution, the dollar, and the free enterprise system. Lansford also participated in a mock trial of President Obama in New York.
Brumfield said Lansford's views would hurt Clovis' reputation and chances of working well with officials in Washington, D.C.
"I do think it matters when you have this type of view, and it's out there on every printed thing. And it will not help the community," she said.
Lansford disagrees. He says the No. 1 responsibility of an elected official is standing up for the Constitution.
"If I as mayor, take the oath of office to serve the citizens of Clovis and we get a few months down the road and somebody comes to me or comes to the City Commission and has a concern or an idea and I know they supported my opponent or they said things ill about me, would I be a man of good character if I disregarded them? It shouldn't matter. At that point, and if anything anybody says about me is untrue, then, you know, I shouldn't be offended by it," Lansford said.
Both are talking about issues that are key to helping Clovis grow: long-term water supplies, business-friendly environment, city upgrades.
Both candidates agree that a long-term water supply is needed for the city. Brumfield says long-term water supplies will come from Ute Lake. A project that received some of its funding from the federal government last month. Lansford says they also must find a balance in usage is key to the area's future.
Cannon Air Force Base has continued to grow which means affordable housing remains a key issue. Brumfield says a business-friendly environment is making it happen. Lansford opposes it by saying housing is best left to the private sector.
The election is Tuesday. Polls are open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Besides the mayoral election, voters in Clovis also can vote for City Commissioners. Also on the ballot is an amendment to add a new section prohibiting the city's elected officers from also holding elective office in any county in New Mexico.
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