Democratic state Sen. Ben McAdams announced he will be running for Salt Lake County Mayor in 2012 on a platform of economic development, improving air quality and education.
McAdams will be competing with Senate Minority Leader Ross Romero for his party’s nomination.
McAdams is a strong ally to Utah’s queer community and after replacing openly gay Sen. Scott McCoy in 2009 he was elected again in 2010 by a strong margin. McAdams sponsored legislation in this year’s legislative session that would protect against bias based on sexual orientation and gender identity in the workplace and housing. Although the bills never made it out of committee, McAdams has continued to voice his support for queer-friendly legislation.
“I am proud of my work at the Capitol as an ally for minority communities. I stand my ground while building common ground,” McAdams said. “Prior to my election to the Senate, I worked to preserve Salt Lake City’s non-discrimination ordinances against threats of the legislature to overturn these important protections.”
McAdams said his background in local and grassroots political organizations will help him in his bid for the County Mayor’s office. He said he would continue to support equal protections for the queer community and be an advocate for equality. Some of the most pressing issues that Salt Lake County residents are facing are poor air quality, a difficult economic outlook and educational concerns, he said.
Romero, who is also an ally to the queer community, announced his bid for mayor because a Democratic seat in the Senate was eliminated in this year’s redistricting process and he wanted to stop two Democratic incumbents from having to face each other in an election. Current Salt Lake County Mayor Peter Corroon is not running for re-election.
Republicans who are considering a bid for the County Mayor’s office include Salt Lake County Recorder Gary Ott, County Councilman Richard Snelgrove and West Valley City Mayor Mike Winder.