Amid push for Wharton, voters examine Herenton's role in 2007 mayoral race

While there was a huge push in support of a possible A C Wharton mayoral run this week, some wonder why there is such a groundswell against incumbent Willie Herenton.

Voters who spoke to Action News 5 on Friday had mixed reasons as to why they think its time for a change.  However, one thing was clear: on the streets of Memphis, voters feel strongly about Mayor Herenton's role in the 2007 Memphis mayoral race.

"I think it's time for a new mayor," said voter Geraldine Farmer.

Farmer said she struggles to make ends meet.  Her family is currently without electricity.  Farmer doesn't think Mayor Herenton is the same leader he used to be.  "I'm not saying he's not a good person," she said.  "It's time for a new one because he's not doing like he used to: to help the community."

For Farmer, it all comes down to money.  "We have a lack in Memphis," she said.  "All the money here in Memphis.  I don't know where its at, but its not here for us."

Other voters did not have such concrete evidence, and said they felt as strongly about Herenton's personality as his performance.  "It seems his reputation has gone downhill over the years, and the citizens of Memphis are disappointed with his performance for whatever reason," one voter said.

But other voters, like Anthony Prather, said Herenton deserves another term.  "Let's talk about some of the good things he's done," Prather said. "Like in my neighborhood, moving people out of the slums and into good homes and more jobs."

Many voters pointed out Herenton's achievements while in office. So while many may want a change, this reporter did not get the sense they were planning on voting for anyone but Herenton.
We'll know on election day.

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