Two Candidates Withdraw From City Races
On the July 15 deadline for candidates to withdraw from this year’s city elections, two people–a Democrat running for the City Council’s 12th District seat and an independent candidate for mayor–scratched their names off the list.
Robert Stokes is an aide to incumbent 12th District Councilmember Carl Stokes, who, after announcing a run for mayor, ended up instead filing to retain his seat–so Robert Stokes, had he stayed in the race, would’ve being campaigning against his boss in the run-up to the Sept. 13 primary election.
“I did what’s best for the 12th District” by withdrawing, Robert Stokes says. “Nobody asked me to leave, but there would have been confusion” had he stayed in the race–not least because he shares his boss’ last name.
Craig Williams, who had filed for mayor on the July 5 filing deadline, also withdrew, ending his effort to gather sufficient petition signatures to have his name placed on the Nov. 8 general-election ballot. He explains that “lack of funds” and a busy summer–“I gotta travel,” he says, “and I’m going on vacation”–prompted him to leave the race. He also says he felt his chances of victory were hampered because, when filing as a candidate, the Maryland Board of Elections “made me use my legal name, not my real name,” which he says is, “Let Me At’Em, the Hype Man of Baltimore.”
Describing himself as retired and on disability, 51-year-old Williams says local athletics coaches “use me” to “hype up” their players before a game. “There’s no one” in the mayor’s race “that’s on the ground with the children like I am,” he says. “If I had been able to use my real name, Let Me At’Em, I would have been a force to contend with,” he adds. “”Nobody in Baltimore knows Craig Williams, but they all know Let Me At’Em.”