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Rawlings: Hopes Issues Raised In Mayoral Candidacy Win The Day


The homeless who have been illegally camped outside Sacramento City Hall for the past two months have a supporter in the mayor's race.

Russell Rawlings has been encouraging homeless protests at City Hall for several months. He says he's running for mayor in part to repeal the city's anti-camping ordinance.

"I've been very close to being without a home myself. So, I know what's that like. I'm fortunate that I live in subsidized housing. If it weren't for that I would be living on the street probably.  Prior to that I was paying 90-percent of my monthly income to rent and kind of surviving on the kindness of others for basic needs.

Though he disagrees with the current council's position on the camping ordinance, he says the current mayor and council have improved Sacramento.

He says one of his goals is to use the new Golden 1 Center and Farm-to-Fork movement to develop new business in the region.

"This new idea of the creative class and entrepreneurship -I think as long as these ideas are developed equitably -as in everyone is allowed to participate- I'm really excited by a lot of these kind of  hacker spaces and co-working ideas. I think they're going to be immensely influential.

Rawlings is 38 and is studying government and journalism at Sacramento State. He has cerebral palsy and has been president of the disability rights organization DOGFITE for the past eight years.

He admits he is inexperienced in campaigning for elected office, but hopes voters will support his efforts to give a voice to common people.

Rawlings' competition in the race: former boxer Tony "The Tiger" Lopez, former State President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg and current City Councilwoman Angelique Ashby.