Candidates convinced to drop out, Livonia cancels primary

Livonia mayor defends efforts to save city money

By Sandra Ali - Anchor/Reporter

LIVONIA, Mich. - Livonia will not have a primary election in August because three candidates were talked into dropping out of the race.

Originally, there were eleven candidates seeking to become the eight finalists in NovemberĀ for the Livonia city council race.

But Livonia Mayor Jack Kirksey contacted three of those candidates to ask them if they wanted to run, or would rather drop out before the deadline.

Richie George was one of those candidates who heard from the mayor and dropped out of the primary.

"Jack said, well will you consider it. I said, 'Jack if it's going to help the city and you can get two others to step down,' I told him absolutely, I would consider it," George said.

Some Livonia residents question the mayor's asking candidates to drop out. But Mayo Kirksey defends his actions.

"Asking them to rethink whether this was the time, the best time for them and the best time for the city to be running," Kirksey said.

Kirksey admitted that money was a motivation. By getting the three candidates to drop out, the city of Livonia saves $35,000 by canceling the election.

"$35,000 is a significant savings," Kirksey said.

Other leading city officials joined the mayor in talking to the three candidates eventually decided to take their names out of the running.

The city of Livonia will now prepare for the November election, when eight candidates will vie for four open city council positions.

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