Candidates for the District 1 city council representative work to maintain composure during an accusatory debate.
As members of the District One community prepared to cast their votes in Tuesday’s, August 1 primary election, candidates Mike Kinard, Janet Wilson, Brandon Johnson and John Stevens took part in a debate driven discussion hosted Saturday, July 29 at The Bridge church. Taking charge of the event, TeenView magazine strived to moderate a fair discussion with the candidates, providing them the equal opportunity to prepare their answers. Candidates received general question guidelines prior to the event, so they each had time to practice their responses.
While each candidate received the same guides, they focused on exclusive issues. Opening the discussion, Kinard emphasized his interested in reimagining District One’s economic development through youth entertainment, while remaining true to character. Kinard reminded his audience to, again, look at candidates’ character, after Johnson was asked to expand upon claims stating he falsely listed an individual, Pastor Wade Moor, as an endorser of his campaign.
Johnson, a candidate pushing for transparency within government, responded stating his team spoke with Bishop Moore who recanted his endorsement–– only for the sake of his affiliations but does not have ill feelings towards Johnson. He continued that residents were welcome to reach out to Bishop Moore to verify his statement. Although Johnson stated he was finished talking about the topic regarding Moore, not every candidate was through. Wilson, a board member of Wichita Independent Neighborhoods, Inc. and the Wichita Transit Advisory Board, stepped up to the podium to argue Moore was not the only person stating that Johnson falsely listed his endorsement.
Johnson was invited back to the podium to respond to Wilson. According to Wilson, this email said Oletha Faust-Goudeau stated she did not endorse Johnson. TeenView magazine previously reached out to Faust-Goudeau confirming she did not endorse Johnson but gave him permission to say that they have worked together on projects. Pastor Houston, another individual listed on Johnson’s endorsement list stated he did not give Johnson permission to use his name.
Despite endorsement controversy, candidates also addressed the most pressing issues they believed District One currently faces, including what to do with McAdam’s pool, a “monument,” according to Kinard, and Stevens’s concern with the alarming amount of dog bites in the area. Discussions surrounding homelessness, equal job opportunity and community finances were also apparent.
The primary election is on Tuesday, Aug. 1. Voters are encouraged to attend the only primary election for Wichita City Council districts. Visit our blog to get a full rundown of the views of the candidates, then get out and vote!