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Political notebook: Former Salisbury City Council candidate eyes Charlotte mayor’s race

By Josh Bergeron


A competitor in Salisbury’s 2015 City Council race has her eyes on a different political contest in 2017.

Constance Johnson, who finished 12th out of 16 candidates in the 2015 Salisbury City Council race, says she plans to run for Charlotte mayor. Johnson has posted about her intentions on her personal and public Facebook pages.

Some of the more prominent candidates for Charlotte mayor include: Jennifer Roberts, the incumbent; Joel Ford, a state senator; and Vi Lyles, who currently serves as the Charlotte mayor pro tem.

Johnson’s voter history shows she was registered to vote in Mecklenburg County from 2003 to 2008. From 2012 to 2015, Johnson voted in Rowan County. Her last vote cast in Rowan was the 2015 municipal election, where she received 572 votes.

Following the 2015 election, Johnson left Rowan County after using her Facebook account to make anti-semitic statements and criticize other candidates. Johnson criticized Councilman David Post, who had made a donation to her campaign, and aimed other posts at Tarik Woods, a Salisbury High senior at the time who had organized a candidate forum. She also claimed someone altered voting results.

When the Salisbury Post wrote about her online postings, Johnson criticized Post and a Salisbury Post reporter. On the story, Johnson posted “You are a disgrace to your people who are not like you unworshipping, unholy, godless Jews.” She posted 10 or more total comments on the story.

When Johnson left Rowan County, she also failed to close out her campaign or turn in finance reports after the election. Campaign finance records show Johnson’s 2015 Salisbury City Council campaign is still active. On Feb. 15, 2016, Johnson’s campaign was issued a “notice of non-compliance.”

The Mecklenburg County Board of Elections’ website states that filing for all offices starts on July 7 at noon. Johnson said she plans to file for Charlotte mayor today at noon.

Reps. Budd, Hudson vote for financial reform measure

Rowan County’s congressmen last week both voted in favor of a measure that would alter financial reforms made after the Great Recession.

The bill, known as the Financial Choice Act, passed in the U.S. House 233 to 186. It would erase or alter provisions of a prior bill known most commonly as Dodd-Frank. Some of its provisions include: weakening the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, eliminating a rule that requires brokers to act in their client’s best interest and preventing some banks from making certain kinds of investments.

In an emailed statement, Rep. Ted Budd, R-13, said the Financial Choice Act replaces “complexity and weakness” with “simplicity and strength.” Budd is a member of the House’s finance committee.

“Under Choice, banks that, in essence, keep significant cash on hand as a shock absorber against economic bumps in the road, get out from under Dodd-Frank’s web of red tape,” Budd said. “Families and small business owners know that there’s no substitute for savings during tough economic times. The principle behind the Financial Choice Act is to put a similar standard on banks.”

Rep. Richard Hudson, R-8, called the bill “a blow to Wall Street and a victory for Main Street.”

“Washington’s top-down approach and web of regulations has made it more costly, and thus less likely, for hard-working people across the country to save, borrow and invest, which is why today’s legislation to overhaul the Dodd-Frank Act is so critical,” Hudson said in an emailed statement.

Hudson also recounted stories from residents of his district who have experienced financial difficulties because of Dodd-Frank. He said a cabinet maker in Concord lost his line of credit and a community bank in Stanly County was unable to consider a customer’s prior relationship with the bank when determining mortgage pricing, Hudson said.

The Financial Choice Act is now headed to the Senate.

Contact reporter Josh Bergeron at 704-797-4246.



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