By M.H. Cavanaugh
Christian Action League
April 10, 2014
Tuesday, State Senator Dan Clodfelter (D-Mecklenburg), resigned his Senate seat to become the Mayor of Charlotte. He was sworn into office on Wednesday.
Sen. Clodfelter served eight terms in the state Senate. He sat on numerous committees: Agriculture, Environment, Natural Resources, Appropriations on Justice and Public Safety, Finance, Judiciary, Program Evaluation, as well as Ways and Means.
Clodfelter’s election as Mayor by Charlotte’s City Council comes on the heels of former Mayor Patrick Cannon’s arrest by federal authorities on public corruption charges. Clodfelter told the media his first priority as the new Mayor would be to restore stability and trust in city government.
After his swearing in on Wednesday, according to the Charlotte Observer, “In an emotional speech, Clodfelter, 63, said ‘old-fashioned values’ would help heal the city.”
“Sen. Clodfelter and I came to the North Carolina General Assembly about the same time. He came in 1998. I came in 1999,” said Dr. Mark Creech, executive director of the Christian Action League. “I know him personally and have had the privilege of witnessing his work. I think its providence that has directed this moment with him now at the helm in Charlotte. He is a man of stupendous integrity. Moreover, he’s remarkably keen. He listens very well and is gifted at problem solving. He’s definitely the man for the hour,” Creech added.
Clodfelter will fill out the unexpired two-year term of Patrick Cannon. The former state Senator says he has not ruled out the possibility of making a run for the Mayor’s office later. But for now, he says he’s concentrating on governing well. Clodfelter indicated that serving as Mayor for anytime longer would largely depend on how well the current experience develops. He told the Charlotte Observer “he would consider putting his name on the ballot if council members believed it’s a good idea.”
Senator Dan Blue (D-Wake), Democratic Minority Leader said Clodfelter’s services will be missed. “The Senate and our state have benefited greatly from Dan Clodfelter’s service,” he said. “Dan is a natural problem-solver, a passionate advocate for his constituents, and a leader of unquestioned integrity. While we will miss him in Raleigh, Charlotte is truly fortunate to have Dan Clodfelter.”
Senate President Pro Tempore, Phil Berger (R-Rockingham) also said, “During his 16-year tenure in the North Carolina Senate, Dan Clodfelter served with distinction. Sen. Clodfelter’s character has never been questioned, and his unblemished reputation will serve the City of Charlotte well during this difficult time. I wish him all the best in his new role.”
“I think there is an obvious pattern apparent with Clodfelter,” said Dr. Creech, “it’s the man’s character. The Bible teaches us that a good name is more important than riches, silver, or gold. In other words, it’s the most valuable thing you possess. Character is destiny. In this case, it can even mean the destiny of a great city,” Creech added.
Mecklenburg Democrats will now have to decide who will replace Clodfelter through the end of the legislative biennium.