Thursday, 21 November, 2019

Montgomery elects first black mayor in city's 200-year history

1782484_web1_1782484-f466220dde014b558866d9292d9baf55 Montgomery to elect new mayor today
Patty Aguilar | 11 October, 2019, 16:42

That changed Tuesday when Montgomery County probate judge Steven Reed won a runoff election to become the first black mayor of the city founded in 1819. This election has never been about just my ideas. "Tonight sent a signal, not just to all of us here in Montgomery, all of us in Alabama, it sent a signal throughout this country about what kind of community we are right now, not what we were", he added.

Reed was elected in 2012 as a probate judge in Montgomery County, becoming the first African-American and youngest person to do so, his website says.

Montgomery Alabama: Mayor elect Steven Reed speaks to his supporters at a rally following his election as the first black mayor in Montgomery, Alabama.

Accepting his victory, Reed said, "This election has never been about me".

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It was the first capital of the Confederate States of America in 1861 and is home to the church where the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. planned the Montgomery bus boycott, which made Rosa Parks a household name.

Todd Strange, who has served as Montgomery's mayor since 2009, had decided not to run for re-election. However, he was forced to stop issuing marriage licenses to gay couples following the decision of the Alabama Supreme Court to end same-sex marriages on the grounds of morality.

Montgomery is one of only three cities in six Deep South states with a population of 100,000 or more that hadn't previously elected an African American mayor. "It's been about the total hopes and dreams that we've as folks and collectively within town", Reed mentioned in his victory speech.

His father, Joe Reed, has been the long-time leader of the black caucus of Alabama's Democratic Party. Disorders within the scuttle integrated tackling crime, which Woods mentioned is his top priority for the length of a debate.

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