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Reed uses Riverwalk brawl, rap concert to win last-minute votes

Montgomery Mayor Steven Reed has enlisted the support of rappers Dirty, Deuce Komradz, Rubberband OG, JR Boss, D’Aye, Hefe, Super Nard, Self Made, Rle Ant and Skagletti for a “Rock the Boat Vote” rally ahead of today’s municipal election. 

Reed is seeking re-election to his second term as mayor.

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While officially billed as a “Turn Up the Vote” concert Monday night, Reed supporters are leaning into the recent riverfront brawl to promote support. 

Reed himself said the brawl was implicitly racial. 

“My perspective as a Black man in Montgomery differs from my perspective as mayor,” Reed said. “From what we’ve seen from the history of our city, a place tied to both the pain and the progress of this nation, it seems to meet the moral definition of a crime fueled by hate, and this kind of violence cannot go unchecked.”

Reed addressed the neighborhood crowd from a makeshift stage Monday night:

“It’s about to go down,” Reed said. “It’s about to go down on tomorrow.” 

He spoke about the “urgency” of being re-elected and “not allowing folks to take us back.”

He’s referencing his main opponent in the election, businessman and philanthropist Barrett Gilbreath, who has made his candidacy about the issues stacking up in Montgomery, which he says is a permanent threat to the city. 

“When Montgomery is thrust into national headlines by an armed eight-year-old who leads police officers on a high-speed chase in a stolen car, it offers solid evidence the city we call home is headed in the wrong direction,” Gilbreath said. 

“Crime does not care if its victims are black or white or rich or poor. It does not care which neighborhood you live in, where you worship, or where you were born. It does not care that it hurts your property values and prevents jobs and businesses from locating here.”

Gilbreath also chastised Reed’s leadership over what he calls a “trash crisis” stacking up across city neighborhoods. He recently encouraged voters who want “real change.” 

The polls are open today in Montgomery from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. 

Grayson Everett is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @Grayson270

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