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Mayor, state lawmaker favored in Detroit primary

September 9, 1997

DETROIT (AP) _ In a city shedding its image of urban decay, Detroit Mayor Dennis Archer hopes his push for stadiums, casinos and renewal will help him win a second four-year term.

The top two candidates in today’s primary election advance to November’s general election. Archer and state Rep. Ed Vaughn were considered favorites over the third candidate, meatpacker Rosa Garmendia, who has raised virtually no money.

Archer, who was a Michigan Supreme Court justice before his election in 1993, has touted scores of recent development projects in the city of 1 million residents, Michigan’s largest. He also said crime and unemployment have decreased during his watch.

Seeking more job growth, Archer last fall pushed successfully for voters statewide to give Detroit the authority to bring in three casinos. In another victory, Wayne County voters approved a tax on hotel rooms and rental cars to help pay for a new downtown stadium for the Detroit Lions of the National Football League, who left the city two decades ago for Oakland County.

Pro baseball’s Tigers will have their own new den next door.

The mayor’s first term also included the opening of the country’s largest black history museum and an apparent end to the ``Devil’s Night″ arson sprees each Halloween.

His connections with Detroit’s business community have brought him a campaign chest estimated at more than $3.5 million. He was the only candidate with television ads.

``The only people who can beat Dennis Archer this year are either dead, in jail or out of town,″ said William Noakes, a Wayne County administrator and local political observer. ``Archer will have a cakewalk.″

Vaughn has campaigned with the slogan ``unbought and unbossed″ and has claimed that Archer is too generous to outside interests.

``Archer is giving the city away,″ Vaughn told The Detroit News. ``Privatizing left and right. Doing away with jobs. Depopulating the city.″

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