NORTH LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KTHV) - State Representative Tracy Steele has picked up an endorsement from one of his former opponents in the race for North Little Rock mayor. Just Monday, Steele and Mark Clinton were debating in THV 11's studio.
On Tuesday, neither Tracy Steele nor Joe Smith picked up the needed 50 percent vote to become North Little Rock's newest mayor in 24 years. Steele accounted for 48 percent of the vote, and Smith accounted for just over 41 percent.
Eight percent, or roughly 1,750 votes, came from Clinton. On Thursday, Clinton encouraged those voters to support Tracy Steele.
"I look forward to a new day, North Little Rock, and I gladly support trace Steele to lead us there," he said.
Clinton mentioned the similarities between his and Steele's campaign, saying they were both looking for more transparency about city budgeting and also want to improve public safety, including a fire station near Rose City.
They both claimed Mayor Patrick Hays, along with Joe Smith, have lagged in these areas, but Smith said one endorsement doesn't change his chances in the election.
"A lot of these people have already called me...are going to be Joe Smith's vote," he said.
Smith said he doesn't consider himself a politician like his opponent, but instead, he alluded to himself as someone who knows how to do city management-spending 22 years working for North Little Rock.
It's worth noting that current Mayor Patrick Hays has endorsed Smith since his campaign began.
The two candidates will now face each other in a runoff election Nov. 27. Early voting for that will start November 20.