Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Jeff Johnson: I'm neutral in mayor's race

Jeff Johnson, who's campaigning to return to city council, sent me an e-mail responding to my post about Bill Patmon.

I knew Johnson and Patmon used to be political allies and speculated they might support each other this year as Patmon runs to unseat Mayor Frank Jackson. Not so, Johnson says.

"I have no interest in getting involved in this year's Mayor's race," Johnson writes. "I have shared with both Bill and Frank that I will neither hurt them or help them."

Johnson, who served in Jane Campbell's mayoral administration, did acknowledge that Jackson and council president Martin Sweeney do not consider him an ally. "I am not part of any joint effort with Bill to bring back or create a political bloc to challenge the power brokers of Cleveland City Hall," he writes. "I don't consider myself an enemy of Jackson or Sweeney, despite their anticipated effort to stop me from winning the City Council position in Ward 8. I will answer whatever they choose to bring against me."

Johnson says he's running for council as an independent voice. If elected, he says, "I will use my experience and aggressive approach to policy development and issue advocacy to assist in finding solutions to our many problems in Cleveland."

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