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Charlotte Mayor Vi Lyles one of 14 Black mayors featured in new Biden for President campaign ads

Updated: Oct. 10, 2020 at 5:21 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Charlotte Mayor Vi Lyles is one of 14 Black mayors across the country featured in new ads supporting the Biden for President campaign.

The 60-second “Mayors” ad begins airing today on television, radio, and digital outlets across the country, including key battleground states like North Carolina. Mayor Lyles is featured in two of the three ads alongside Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms, Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell, Flagstaff, Arizona Mayor Coral Evans, San Francisco Mayor London Breed, Washington, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser, Birmingham, Alabama Mayor Randall Woodfin, Columbia, South Carolina Mayor Steven Benjamin, Denver Mayor Michael Hancock, Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner, Richmond, Virginia Mayor Levar Stoney, Stockton, California Mayor Michael Tubbs and St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter.

You can view the ads here:

WBTV’s Kristi O’Connor spoke with Lyles about the ads ahead of its release. She says it shows the partnership and united front that she shares with other Democratic leaders in the U.S.

“We talk frequently, we help and support each other. If you could see the text message chains, you would know that when things happen, we talk about what’s happening in your city and my city,” Lyles said. “You think about the problems that we [Charlotte] have compared to Atlanta and DC, we have the same problems. It might be a different scale, but I do believe this is an unprecedented effort by Mayors in Urban communities to say we need change.”

Lyles pointed to Charlotte' aging infrastructure; the bus and rail systems date back to the 1970s and 1980s, respectively, according to Lyles. She believes former Vice President Joe Biden will get more federal dollars back to Charlotte.

“We’re expecting over 300,000 people to move here in the next 20 years. I need to be able to go to the White House, go to the federal government and present our case. To say we need to get the federal dollars to Washington to come back. And that’s what I believe Vice President Biden will help us do,” Lyles said.

Lyles says she has worked well with the Trump administration when they find common ground, but that there are more issues in urban areas that she says the president has not made progress on.

“The ideas about urban communities, aside from opportunity zones, we haven’t been able to get into the transit areas, we haven’t been able to get into the revitalization areas deeply, and we need that help,” Lyles said.

According to a Pew Research Center poll released Friday, former Vice President Joe Biden leads President Donald Trump with 52 percent of registered voters to Trump’s 42 percent.

“I’m asking people to vote. And vote your choice. I believe the Biden/Harris ticket is the best choice for our city, for our state,” Lyles said. “This pandemic has shown the cracks in our infrastructure from the healthcare disparities to the essential worker needs to where we have to deal wit the health and wellbeing of this city. We need leadership that’s going to help us close those gaps.”

WBTV reached out to the Trump campaign for a response to the Biden for President ads and Mayor Vi Lyles' support for the Biden campaign.

A spokesperson told WBTV: “A Democrat mayor supports the Democrat candidate for president, how is this news?”

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