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Bedsole, Rich endorse Peavy

Mayoral also-rans Ann Bedsole and Bess Rich have endorsed John Peavy in the city councilman's bid to overtake Sam Jones and claim Mobile's mayorship in Tuesday's runoff election.

“I believe John has the ability to move this great city forward with the ideals I promoted and my supporters care about,” said Bedsole. “And I would ask my supporters to consider voting for John Peavy in Tuesday’s runoff election.”

Mrs. Bedsole's remarks were issued in a press release distributed by the Peavy campaign.

A former state senator, Mrs. Bedsole said Peavy’s vision for Mobile more closely mirrors her own than does Jones'.

“It is indeed an honor to receive endorsements from Ann Bedsole, one of Alabama’s most respected leaders," said Peavy. "She understands the importance of next Tuesday’s mayoral runoff election. And, as in the past, she has always taken a positive step forward to help guide us.”

“Ann Bedsole is a true Mobile treasure," he added. "Her confidence in my vision for Mobile’s future is encouraging, her trust in my dedication to preserving its past, heartening. My respect for her is endless.”

Also citing a common vision for Mobile’s future, Mrs. Rich also encouraged her supporters to back Peavy over Jones.

“Immediately after the election John wrote me a card, he left several messages, he held numerous meetings with my supporters and volunteers and most importantly he was interested in what concerned us and sought our advice,” said Mrs. Rich.  “Sam Jones never called, he never reached out to any of us. It is clear to me that there is only one candidate who has any intentions of reaching out to everyone in Mobile and that is John Peavy.”

Rich said that it was easy to find common ground with Peavy.

“John and I campaigned with similar platforms, including lower taxes and improved police and fire protection, particularly in West Mobile,” said Mrs. Rich. “John has agreed to consider several of my proposals including CitiStats as a management tool for city government, and implementing new comprehensive long range planning for our city.”

“In addition,” she said, “John agrees that planning commission meetings should be televised and that inducements for annexation should be created.”

“I am greatly appreciative of Bess’s endorsement today," said Peavy. "Bess Rich has a strong contingent of loyal supporters, who have met with me for many hours over the last two weeks to discuss their concerns and their needs. These are people who love this city and I am honored to know that I have their support.

“To be successful, in next Tuesday’s mayoral runoff, we need everyone in Mobile to have the energy and love for this city that Bess Rich has," Peavy said. "The platforms of our two campaigns stressed the same basic theme: Neighborhoods First and Empower Mobile. The underlying principle in each case is citizen involvement and the providing of basic services. Over the years Bess has stood strong for these principles and she has given greatly of herself to keep these concerns alive in the public."

“I have always respected Bess and the positions she has taken and I hope that this endorsement is not the last we will see of her," he continued. "I think the people of Mobile would be honored if she would consider serving in my administration, but that is something I will have to leave up to her.”

“Bess’s endorsement represents a major step in our outreach effort for a united Mobile," said Peavy.

Rich expressed concern that the recent hurricane has left many unfocused on Tuesday’s election. 

“Tuesday’s election is critical to our city’s future for many generations to come,” Rich said. “We need to get the word out to everyone; there is only one election and only one chance to change Mobile.  I encourage everyone to contact their family and friends to remind them that their vote is important.”

Rich also took the opportunity to thank her grassroots campaign staff and supporters.

“They devoted their time, talent and resources and their efforts will always be treasured,” she said.

Peavy again jabbed Jones with an offer of a $1,000 bounty to anyone who produced a written Jones' plan for the city.  

“I would also like to renew my offer of a $1,000 bounty to the first person who can produce a previously published, detailed plan of Sam Jones (for the city's future)," Peavy said.

"Ann is one hundred percent correct in saying campaigns are built on trust. I just don’t understand how anyone can trust a candidate who does not even have a written plan of his vision.”

Dismissing Peavy's ploy as so much campaign grandstanding, Jones suggested his response to a Mobile Register survey constituted a written plan, adding that he may claim the reward and donate the money to victims of Hurricane Katrina.

Jones received almost 48 percent of the vote Aug. 23. Peavy got more than 25 percent to finish second and force a runoff.

Jones, a Democrat, has served on the Mobile County Commission for 18 years.

Peavy, Bedsole and Rich have all run for public office as Republicans. Peavy served on the Mobile City Council from 1985-93 and won a special election to serve out the final year of Stephen Nodine's term as the District 7 city council representative. Nodine was elected to the Mobile County Commission in 2004.