Mayor mayhem

Victoria Gomez, News Writer

A view of the Cedar River, which has become a central topic in the Cedar Rapids mayoral election. Bing Images.

When there are yard signs in front of people’s houses, one can tell that election season is here. On Tuesday, November 2, thousands showed up ready to vote for a new Cedar Rapids mayor. There were four candidates running for mayor: Myra Colby Bradwell, Amara Andrews, Tiffany O’Donnell and Brad Hart, who is running for re-election. After the votes were counted, O’Donnell reached the top of the polls, collecting 10,991 votes. Some people would assume that she won because she got the most votes but that is not the case here. To win, a candidate has to get at least 50% of the vote. O’Donnell got only 40% so now it is runoff time. Runoff is when the top two candidates go up against each other for another round of voting and this year it is O’Donnell versus Andrews. Andrews beat the former mayor, Hart, by only 24 votes. Even with the close margin, Hart has said he will not ask for a recount. “I have decided not to ask for a recount, in part to avoid the cost and the efforts of those who would need to be involved. Thank you to my family, friends, volunteers and Cedar Rapids voters for your support in my re-election bid. We fell short of our goal and are, of course, disappointed. However, I am proud of the successes of the last four years and where the city stands today,” Hart said. Tiffany O’Donnell is a former news anchor and CEO of Women Take Charge. She has lived in Iowa her entire life and is passionate about making Cedar Rapids a place where her kids and others want to stay after high school graduation. Her goals for if she becomes mayor are to finish derecho cleanup, ensure opportunities for the workforce in Cedar Rapids and make the Cedar River a focal point for the city. O’Donnell sees potential growth for the city if she becomes mayor. “We have an opportunity to be the change, and this is our opportunity,” O’Donnell said. The other candidate in the run off is Amara Andrews. Andrews would be the first Black mayor of Cedar Rapids. Moving to Cedar Rapids from California a little over ten years ago, she has since become the head of business development and communications for the transportation division of TrueNorth Companies. She is also involved in countless organizations in the city, including Boys and Girls Club and The Academy for Scholastic and Personal Success. Her mission for if she becomes mayor is to focus on derecho cleanup, accelerate flood control actions and to improve COVID-19 response. Anyone above the age of 18 can vote for the new mayor of Cedar Rapids. Those under 18 can urge parents to go out to the polls on November 30 and vote because it is said by some that every vote truly matters.