By Maria Boynton

The 9 major candidates for Mayor of Atlanta addressed issues ranging from housing to their opinion of President Donald Trump. CBS Radio Atlanta stations V103 and WAOK hosted the forum at Woodruff Arts Center. The forum was broadcast and live-streamed. The candidates in attendance were Peter Aman, Keisha Lance Bottoms, John Eaves, Vincent Fort, Kwanza Hall, Ceasar Mitchell, Mary Norwood, Michael Sterling and Cathy Woolard.

The candidates were asked about their plan to increase affordable housing in the city. Aman said “I’m going to bring the will and the commitment to make it a top priority of my administration.” Calling it “absolutely imperative.” Eaves said he’d reform the tax situation for property owners, and give senior citizens a break on paying school taxes. Fort said he would not displace the people living in the city, pointing to the city’s use of eminent domain in “evicting” families in the Peoplestown area. Hall called rents “too damn high” adding “we can fix it.” Mitchell said he’d “create at least 20,000 affordable housing units in this city.”

Asked if they supported the group Black Lives Matter, Norwood said she supports every movement since the 60s “that supports equality and justice and fairness for everyone.” Norwood adding that community policing would be a top priority. Woolard said BLM has “raised such an important discussion about race and racism in this country” and she hopes they continue to “build strength and continue to talk about important matters..not just police shootings… all the things we need to be talking about in this country.” Bottoms said she’s happy that her 15 year old son, “has an example of young people who are agitating the establishment and advocating for change.” Sterling said he “supports the movement that calls on the conscience of the country to understand that black lives, in-fact, do matter, and that anybody who shoots a black man should be held accountable.”

Pretty much all the candidates, other than some need-for-clarity from Mary Norwood, were clear about their disdain for President Donald Trump.

The election is on November 7, 2017.

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