Flint’s messed-up mayor’s race has taken another bizarre turn.
You don’t normally hear a mayoral candidate threatening to literally eat one of his political rivals on election night. But Flint’s mayor’s race this year is hardly normal.
“I will try to feast on that pig at my victory party. He’ll be invited VIP,” joked city councilman and mayoral candidate Wantwaz Davis.
Flint attorney Mike Ewing says he decided to launch a write-in campaign to elect “Giggles the Pig” after a screw-up in the Flint city clerk’s office meant all mayoral candidates missed the filing deadline.
Ewing says he’s not happy with the quality of the candidates who may have to run write-in campaigns in the November general election.
“We have people who are running for office for mayor who are less qualified than the pig,” says Ewing.
Ewing singles out Councilman Davis. He points to Davis’ murder conviction and nearly 20 years spent in a state prison. Davis was elected to the Flint city council after his release. Ewing also questions some of Davis’ public statements since being elected to the city council.
Councilman Eric Mays is another target of Ewing’s pig protest campaign. Mays has had legal troubles since his own election to the Flint city council, and has been involved in several disputes with his fellow council members.
Ewing also has objections to incumbent mayor Dayne Walling and candidate Dr. Karen Weaver.
Walling was less insulted by the pig campaign than the other candidates. He sees it as a response to the situation.
“It’s got some people thinking creatively about democracy,” Walling says. “I thought it was funny.”
Flint’s election issues go far beyond a pet pig.
City officials hope to convince a judge to allow four mayoral candidates to appear on a primary ballot in August.
If not, the candidates may have to face a pig with experience in mudslinging in November.