Candidates for County Commission District 1, Position 1 - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Candidates for County Commission District 1, Position 1

Three Republicans are campaigning for your vote in the District one Position one race for County Commission.

The three candidates have similar stances on key issues like spending, taxes and ethics reform, but are separated by very different styles.

Mike Ritz's $100,000, dollar year long campaign for County Commission hit full stride late last month with a not-so-subtle swipe at current and former lawmakers indicted in the Tennessee Waltz scandal.

Still, the retired banker says the race for the District One Position One seat is as much about character as it is about commitment to lowering taxes, balancing the budget and digging Shelby County out of its two billion dollar debt.

"The problem is so big that it out to take up three spots in the catagory, that's the challenge I think that we all have," Ritz said.

Political newcomer Mike Rude says he's up to that challenge. 

The 33-year-old FedEx financial analyst ran a $10,000 dollar grassroots campaign, targeting voters door to door.

He has the sunburn to prove it.

"I don't brag that I know how the system works, I boast that I have ideas how to make it better," Rude said.

Then, there's Memphis process server Charles Fineberg: the self-proclaimed "rogue" candidate.

Fineberg boasts his straight-talking style, and his plan to solve the county's financial freefall the same way he ran his low-budget campaign.

"If you don't have it you don't spend it." Fineberg said. "It's very simple."

The hard choice for voters, selecting from three candidates with similar views, but very different styles.

There is no incumbent in this race, after Commissioner Marilyn Loeffel chose to give up her seat for a shot at  Shelby County Clerk.

Since there are no democrats running for this seat, the winner of the May second Republican primary will get the seat.

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