Stewart rallies supporters as Primary Day approaches

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Will Stewart on Sept. 10, 2023. Photo/Andrew Sylvia

MANCHESTER, N.H. – With just over a week left until the Manchester Mayoral Primary Election, Mayoral Candidate Will Stewart and a packed house of his supporters gathered for one last campaign get together to build morale.

In a speech to those supporters, Stewart stated that the state’s two major political parties have often seen Manchester’s mayorship as a prize, but his campaign is fueled not by partisanship but on a managerial approach and an emphasis on collaboration.

“I’m not going to sit up here and tell you that I alone know how to solve (the city’s problems) or that we alone can solve them together in the next two years,” he said. “You know we can make progress by working together and we can close to those goal lines, but it won’t be easy and we need somebody leading the charge who has the professional background.”

Stewart believed his emphasis on collaboration as a staple for what is needed to run a city was also a cornerstone of campaign as the speech slowly turned into a discussion between himself and the assembled supporters.

The audience appreciated Stewart’s efforts to incorporate the importance of the arts into his campaign, in addition to his efforts regarding traffic calming efforts near the neighborhoods between Beech and Maple, helping emphasize more investment into the Center City through initiatives like planting more trees and tackling the issues of housing and homelessness among other topics.

Stewart also noted that along with analytics and cooperation, an innate negativity he believes has been part of the city since it lost its textile industry will need to be address, something he found while writing his book about the city in 2016.

“For too long, Manchester has sold itself short. It irritates me frankly that sometimes we have this almost defeatist attitude,” he said.

“We need to be able to showcase what’s great about the city, some of the hidden and not so hidden treasures across the city in a small way to bring back pride to Manchester. I certainly think we can become one of America’s great mid-sized cities, but to do that, we need to have the confidence to tackle some of these big pressing issues,” he added.

The event was held at the home of Debi and Jeff Rapson, with Debi having known Stewart for 23 years. However, she wasn’t sure she would support him until he talked to voters on the West Side and provided realistic and honest answers to difficult questions.

“He talked a lot tonight not just about what’s he’s done, but also the vision he has going forward and I love that, he has a vision that is inclusive of so many people,” she said.

Primary Day is Tuesday, Sept. 19 with Stewart up against Jay Ruais, Kevin Cavanaugh and June Trisciani. The top two candidates will advance to the General Election, which will take place on Tuesday, Nov. 7.

About this Author

Andrew Sylvia

Assistant EditorManchester Ink Link

Born and raised in the Granite State, Andrew Sylvia has written approximately 10,000 pieces over his career for outlets across Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Vermont. On top of that, he's a licensed notary and licensed to sell property, casualty and life insurance, he's been a USSF trained youth soccer and futsal referee for the past six years and he can name over 60 national flags in under 60 seconds according to that flag game app he has on his phone, which makes sense because he also has a bachelor's degree in geography (like Michael Jordan). He can also type over 100 words a minute on a good day.