Traverse City Record-Eagle

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October 26, 2013

Estes undecided; commission candidate jumps into fray

TRAVERSE CITY — Mayor Michael Estes remains undecided about his political future following his drunken driving arrest, but one would-be city commissioner will take advantage of an opportunity to run as a write-in mayoral candidate.

Commission candidate John Reid filed Thursday as a write-in candidate for mayor. He was joined Friday by George Golubovskis, a homeless man who is not a registered voter in the city, so votes for Golubovskis won’t count.

No other candidate, sitting city commissioner, nor resident filed before Friday’s 4 p.m. deadline. Commission candidates can run concurrently for both the commission and as a write-in candidate for mayor, city Clerk Benjamin Marentette determined after consulting with state election officials and the city attorney.

“I hope the mayor decides not to run,” Reid said. “Do you want somebody who has done that to be the tiebreaker on a big vote in the city? I don’t. Not with his moral record.”

Estes was arrested Wednesday around 9 p.m. near Eighth and Rose streets for first offense drunken driving. He was heading home from a candidate forum at Central Elementary School and told the Record-Eagle he had been drinking prior to the forum, where he showed up late at about 8:15 p.m.

His preliminary blood alcohol level tested at the scene was 0.10 percent. Tests at the county jail shortly before 10 p.m. indicated his blood-alcohol level was 0.12 percent. State law defines drunken driving as 0.08 percent or above.

Estes said in a statement to the Record-Eagle Friday that he was “shocked at the positive responses from so many people,” who strongly encouraged him to continue as mayor.

“My ultimate decision will be a family decision that will be made soon,” Estes wrote. “The results of the election may eliminate any need for decisions.”

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