2 Memphis City Council hopefuls duke it out in court - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Reported by Kontji Anthony

2 Memphis City Council hopefuls duke it out in court

Two candidates are fighting for your vote in the District 4 Memphis City Council Race.

One is filing suit against the other. Johnny Hatcher Junior filed a lawsuit against his opponent Wanda Halbert over whether or not she should be able to run.

In the lawsuit, Hatcher claims his one and only opponent is not eligible to run for office.

On Friday, a judge could decide if he wins by default.

The lawsuit alleges Halbert is not eligible to run for City Council because she currently holds a position as a Memphis City School Board member.

"It's absolutely ridiculous and until we can restore confidence of the fairness of our elections, this is where our voter apathy comes from. So, this is my number one priority," says Hatcher.

But, last month, the Shelby County Election Commission sided with Halbert. So, Hatcher's suing them too.

"It doesn't matter how much they try to explain that to the candidates, it's usually always an issue with someone," says Halbert.

When Hatcher ran for Shelby County Commission last year, he alleged voter fraud then also.

The notary public has run for and lost five elections, from the U.S. Senate to the House of Representatives.

Still, he says he's determined. "Muhammed Ali was the greatest fighter in the history of the world. He lost to Joe Frazier. But, what he did is he got back up and he beat the living snot out of Joe Frazier and I'm going to do the same thing to my opponent," says Hatcher.

Halbert's in her second term on the school board. She ran and lost a bid for Juvenile Court Clerk last year.

"There are some very serious issues that we need to be concerned about: Quality education, reduction in crime, economic development, which includes unemployment," says Halbert.

No matter how this goes, the new developments are just one sign the election is in the home stretch.

Commissioners did not want to comment since the lawsuit is ongoing. The case goes before a judge Friday.


Click here to email Kontji Anthony.
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