Mayoral hopefuls face uphill battle - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

Mayoral hopefuls face uphill battle

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She wants to become the first woman to ever hold the post.

He could join A C Wharton in bringing judicial experience to an executive role.

But, both could face an uphill battle in unseating a "Teflon" incumbent. Yes, both the Republican and Democratic primaries for the 2014 race for Shelby County Mayor aren't until next May. However, it doesn't mean conjecture about who is running and who might run against expected incumbent Mark Luttrell hasn't already begun.

"The Republican Party will put a lot of talent, a lot of money and a lot of expertise to make sure Mark Luttrell wins the election," Memphis pollster Breje Yacoubian said.

This week former two term Shelby County Commissioner Deidre Malone became the first to make it known she's ready to return to government service after a two and a half year hiatus. A loser to Joe Ford in the Democratic Primary for county mayor in 2010, Malone hasn't been idle since her defeat. Her public relations firm is bustling and her visibility quotient hasn't declined. As an "early bird' candidate, noted political pollster and analyst Berje Yacoubian likes her chances to win the Democratic nod....if.

"The question is who else runs. If the combination is such that her votes will be divided among stronger candidates then she will be an also-ran," Yacoubian said.

Among the names bandied about to challenge Malone is soon term limited out Shelby County Commissioner, Steve Mulroy. Yet, the master of the impromptu limerick, is playing it close to vest when it comes to his political future....or is it a judicial one?

"As Ronald Reagan said, "never say never." But right now, I'm really looking at the fact I really love being a law professor," Mulroy said.

"Steve Cohen had announced a month or two ago that my name was one among three sent to the White House for consideration for a federal judicial vacancy," Mulroy said.

But, Yacoubian says in order for a Democratic candidate to make a real fight of it to unseat Luttrell, they'll have to take advantage of a potential springboard built into the party's local demographics.

"The candidate that can attract a substantial number of the white Democratic vote and a vast majority of African American vote will have a good 42 percent base on which to build," Yacoubian said.

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