Politics & Government

To reach voters, City Council member turned to old colleague – Patrick Cannon

Former mayor Patrick Cannon (left), at this first public appearance since being released from federal prison, did a voice over for a radio ad for City Council member Claire Fallon’s campaign.
Former mayor Patrick Cannon (left), at this first public appearance since being released from federal prison, did a voice over for a radio ad for City Council member Claire Fallon’s campaign. sharrison@charlotteobserver.com

Needing a voice over for a campaign radio ad, at-large City Council member Claire Fallon turned to an old colleague: Former Mayor Patrick Cannon.

Cannon, who spent 22 months in federal prison after pleading guilty to taking bribes as mayor, read the voice over, which praised Fallon.

Whether enlisting Cannon’s assistance helped or hurt Fallon’s campaign isn’t clear. But it wasn’t enough for her to keep her job. She finished sixth out of eight candidates in Tuesday’s Democratic primary. The top four finishers – James Mitchell, Braxton Winston, Julie Eiselt and Dimple Ajmera – advanced to the November general election.

“He did a voice over for one of my spots – he’s an old friend,” Fallon said. “What’s the big deal about that? He paid his dues. He didn’t whine, he didn’t cry. He didn’t turn anyone else in. He paid his dues like a gentleman.”

Cannon hosts a Saturday morning radio show, At the Table with Cannon, on Old School 105.3. Fallon said she was going to advertise on his show. He was released from federal prison last September.

“I was going to advertise on his program, and he said, ‘Do you want me to do the voice over?’ ”

Fallon, 83, was first elected in 2011. A Democrat, she served with Cannon when he was a council member and then as mayor, until he was arrested in March 2014. They were often political allies, voting together on many issues.

Steve Harrison: 704-358-5160, @Sharrison_Obs

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