‘No space for cowards’: Black leaders voice support for Ken Welch in St. Pete mayoral race

As the results of the 2020 General Election settle, sights are set on St. Petersburg’s 2021 mayoral race.

With Mayor Rick Kriseman leaving office because of term limits, candidates are beginning to file to run for the mayoral seat. And, local leaders of Pinellas County’s Black community have made clear what they are looking for: an active leader.

“What we have seen in 2020 is that there’s no space for cowards or for those who are afraid,” said JC Pritchett, President of the Interdenominational Ministerial Alliance and a St. Pete activist. “The pandemic, the economic downturn, George Floyd‘s death and the protests in the streets make my community very aware that the people who hold public service positions make decisions that affect our lives, whether we live or die.”

That’s why, Pritchett said, he is backing Ken Welch for Mayor. Welch has served on the Pinellas County Commission since 2000. Former St. Pete City Council member Darden Rice is also running. Both are Democrats.

Other potential candidates include Republicans Robert Blackmon and Jeff Brandes. A 20-year-old University of South Florida student, Michael Ingram, has also filed to run.

In looking at the candidates, one heated race

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