SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) - Two candidates are left standing after they beat out 6 other contenders vying to becomes the next mayor of Shreveport.
But now that the watch parties are over there’s still another month of hard work ahead for the top two finishers.
Political newcomer Democrat Adrian Perkins, followed in second place by fellow Democrat incumbent Ollie Tyler.
Our goal on this day seemed simple enough: To watch and hear Tyler and Perkins on this first day of the runoff campaign.
But we soon discovered that completing that task proved more difficult than it sounds.
Fresh off a first place finish in the mayoral race, Perkins wasted no time in starting his runoff campaign, first with a visit to the African American Chamber of Commerce luncheon in downtown Shreveport. "I'm at a luncheon right now and I'll be knocking on your doors this afternoon, even in the rain."
When we pressed Perkins on exactly what he and his campaign have in store for the next month, this political newcomer was all smiles. “Ah, you want me to give you our secrets, Jeff? (laugh) No, honestly it’s all about bringing the message to the people of Shreveport. It’s been like that on day one and will remain like that through the entire campaign.”
While Perkins attracted 29 percent of the vote in the 8 person field, Tyler finished second with 24 percent, earning a spot in the runoff. We reached out repeatedly on this ‘day after’ to Ollie Tyler’s campaign, but were unsuccessful. But we did speak at length with her on election night. Mayor Tyler told us her administration’s hard work in her first term has paid off with improvements across the board, from infrastructure projects and crime fighting efforts, to more jobs through economic development. “There is so many things that this team has really worked hard to do. And we push every single day trying to get it done. But we serve the people.”
In the Saturday, December 8 runoff, it will pit the incumbent seasoned public servant, Ollie Tyler, against newcomer Adrian Perkins, a West Point and Harvard law School grad.
To get some context on this mayoral race we turned to LSU Shreveport History Department Chair and professor Gary Joiner, Ph.D., pointed out that Tyler and Perkins received a little more than half of all votes in the race. But that still leaves 47 percent of unclaimed voters for the runoff.
Joiner said the race could ultimately boil down to which campaign can build alliances with more of the other 6 candidates now out of the race, asking for an endorsement and to recommend their followers vote for that campaign.