Phoenix Mayoral Candidates' Coveted Endorsements from City Council Members

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Several Phoenix City Council members have picked sides in the August 30 mayor's race.

Councilman Tom Simplot stands with Phoenix mayoral candidate and lobbyist Wes Gullett, councilmen Michael Johnson and Sal DiCiccio are backing Peggy Neely, a former councilwoman running for mayor, and Councilman Michael Nowakowski has endorsed Greg Stanton's mayoral bid..

And although the Arizona Republic initially wrote that Bryan Jeffries was backing Claude Mattox, and later wrote that he hadn't actually indicated whether he was getting involved, Jeffries tells New Times that he's behind Mattox.


For now, it also looks like Councilwoman Thelda Williams, Councilman Bill Gates and Mayor Phil Gordon are going to sit this one out.

In other endorsement news ... Mattox posted a Facebook update on Monday proclaiming that he had been endorsed by Kimber Lanning, director of Local First Arizona,  a non-profit organization that advocates support of locally owned businesses.

But she says the post was removed because, as it turns out, she isn't actually endorsing Mattox or any other mayoral candidate.

Another look at Mattox's Facebook page reveals that the post wasn't removed, but just tweaked. On his page, Mattox writes: "Kimber Lanning, a local entrepreneur, endorsed my economic plan."

Again -- not true, according to Lanning.  

Instead, Lanning urges voters to take time to read all of the candidates' proposals.

She says Mattox's thinking that she endorsed him was a "miscommunication."

She says that Mattox, Gullett, and Stanton all asked her to evaluate their business plans. She wrote a complimentary statement for each of their proposals.

"They all have good plans," Lanning says, adding that her comments do not "equate to an endorsement of one campaign" or one plan.

We left a message with Mattox's spokesperson, who wasn't immediately available for comment.

It's not the first time that Mattox has tweaked reality when it comes to who is and isn't giving him an official endorsement.

On his campaign website's Endorsements page, he lists several individuals as "supporters" of his campaign, even though they actually are working to get Neely elected.

He may leave the impression that certain individuals are in his political camp because the "supporters" -- several zoning attorneys -- previously donated money to his campaign.

It's common practice for some politicos, not knowing how an election is going to turn out, to hedge their bets and toss a little cash at several candidates running for the same office.

Read our previous post for more details.

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