Milwaukee's mayoral candidates 'tap into' community concerns

NOW: Milwaukee’s mayoral candidates ’tap into’ community concerns

MILWAUKEE, Wis. (CBS 58) -- All seven mayoral candidates in Milwaukee attended the inaugural firkin tapping at Black Husky Brewery on Saturday. This includes Milwaukee Alderwoman Marina Dimitrijevic, Former Milwaukee Alderman Bob Donovan, Acting Milwaukee Mayor Cavalier Johnson, Milwaukee County Sheriff Earnell Lucas, Businessman Michael Sampson, State Sen. Lena Taylor (D-Milwaukee) and Ieshuh Griffin. 

Lakefront Brewery and Black Husky Brewing invited all the candidates for a special firkin tapping. 

The breweries allowed each candidate to have their own beer casks outside Black Husky. They simultaneously pounded the firkin faucets.  

"Being a great brewing center, it will be a nice to have a Milwaukee mayor who can perform ceremonial tappings at openings of festivals and events. But most importantly, our event shows that these candidates are all willing to come out, meet the people and have some fun.” said Russ Klisch, President of Lakefront Brewery.

"This is great fun, but it also speaks to the legacy that breweries built this city, and the source of fresh water brought those breweries here. Hosting here at Black Husky, in the heart of Riverwest, which is also the center of craft brewing in Milwaukee, is a great honor," said Tim Eichinger, co-owner of Black Husky Brewing. 

The event was also a chance for candidates to tap into the minds of community members. Many, thinking about the recent surge in gun violence...including the shooting of three local law enforcement officers. 

"I cannot believe how much Milwaukee has deteriorated in just the last two years. Every decent law-abiding citizen that criminals are going to be held accountable for their crimes. We have an obligation to ensure that our DA'S our judges and our courts are indeed holding these people accountable," said former Alderman Donovan. 

Accountability other candidates feel the city will only achieve by working together. 

"I met with other legislators as well talking about just these sort of issues. You can't be just an obstructionist and look to fight with Madison. You have to engage with Madison and work with Madison in order to get things done. When somebody harms our community and pulls out a gun and shoots and kills somebody, they can't just go sit on someone's couch and nobody say a thing. There are opportunities for people to speak up and they need to do that," said Acting Mayor Johnson. 

CBS 58 also heard from law enforcement directly. 

"There are those that are out here carrying illegal firearms, creating acts of violence in our community and we have to work within our community to build strong neighborhoods and build strong families and get more jobs and opportunities to people," said Sheriff Lucas.

People other candidates want to create second paths for. 

"The high-point North Carolina model which is like let's make a deal. Door number one we have the intelligence to take you to prison. Door number two, we want to be able to give you empowerment and wrap you around pathways to work, entrepreneurship and homeownership. Those are the things we are going to have to do," said Senator Taylor. 

All proceeds from the $5 firkin pours will benefit the upkeep of the River Revitalization Foundation's Turtle Park and the primary election is coming up on February 15. 

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