Maurice Washington enters Charleston mayoral race

Maurice Washington

Former Charleston City Councilman Maurice Washington has entered the Charleston mayoral race.

Washington filed his initial candidate campaign disclosure report with the state Ethics Commission on Tuesday. So far, he has raised $6,700.

He confirmed this month at the Charleston County Republican Party convention that he intended to run in the non-partisan race for mayor. And he was picked as the party favorite, with 28 votes in a straw poll.

But, Washington said, each candidate is running independently and “will be battling for Republican, Democratic and Independent support.” He appreciates winning the straw poll, he said, but he would like to win the Democratic straw poll as well if they have one.

Most of the work for which a mayor is responsible is non-partisan, he said. “Safety isn’t Democrat or Republican. Sanitation isn’t Democrat or Republican.”

Washington said he will formally announce his campaign some time in May, but he had to file a disclosure report because he already has raised more than $500.

He also said that as a candidate he will support important discussions on many issues, including: overdevelopment, diversity and inclusion, efficiency in government and partnerships with the private sector.

Washington is starting late as a mayoral candidate. Five other candidates have been campaigning for months and are ahead of Washington in fundraising: state Rep. Leon Stavrinakis; Charleston City Councilman William Dudley Gregorie; former city councilman Paul Tinkler; Ginny Deerin, Charleston Mayor Joe Riley’s former campaign manager; and businessman John Tecklenburg.

Reach Diane Knich at 937-5491 or on Twitter at @dianeknich.