Syracuse mayoral candidate Kevin Bott challenges incumbent Stephanie Miner to debate

Sep 24, 2013

Syracuse's Green Party mayoral candidate, Kevin Bott, met his opponent, current Mayor Stephanie Miner, for the first time Monday night and challenged her to a debate.

Miner said she was willing to listen to what he had to say and that her campaign manager would get back to him.

Bott says the people of Syracuse deserve to hear different viewpoints debate each other in a general election.

"I just think that not only does it strip from the people of Syracuse the ability to make an informed decision but it undermines the very idea of a democracy. If the people don't have a chance to listen to differing viewpoints and perspectives and visions for the future of our city, essentially we're saying the race is over and the people don't have a choice."
 

Green Party mayoral candidate Kevin Bott (right) waits for Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner at the Brown Memorial United Methodist Church.
Green Party mayoral candidate Kevin Bott (right) waits for Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner at the Brown Memorial United Methodist Church.
Credit Tom Magnarelli/WRVO

He also noted that the city needs to focus on what's important, including Syracuse's high poverty rate.

"Before we can solve anything, we need to stabilize people who are living in desperation," Bott said. "When you have 37 percent of a population living in poverty, that is a desperate situation for a city and we are sleep walking our way toward a Detroit-style takeover. And I think we need to wake up and do something quite different than what's been done in the past."

One idea on Bott's job and economy platform is to create a system that he says would eliminate the middle man for local, temporary workers.

Kevin Bott works as the associate director of a group called Imagining America, which encourages college faculty partnerships with the community.

Also running in this November's election against Stephanie Miner and Kevin Bott is Conservative Party candidate Ian Hunter.