One candidate in the race for the District 4 seat on Sandy Springs City Council is accusing another candidate of injecting partisan politics into the non-partisan race.

Chiteka Jackson said in an e-mail that fellow candidate Gabriel Sterling is telling residents “they should vote for him because he is a Republican.” The two face Dennis Williams in a three-way race for the council seat vacated with the resignation of former City Councilwoman Ashley Jenkins

“He has even given his opinion on my party affiliation,” Jackson said. “My retort to this is Sandy Springs residents should assess all candidates based on their credentials and ability to serve Sandy Springs.”

Sterling, a political consultant, responded that when voters ask him his party affiliation, “I’m not going to lie. I’m a Republican.”

“I’m the only Republican in the race,” he said. “That’s the difference between me and my opponents. … People ask me [my party affiliation]. To some people it’s important.”

But Jackson called for a campaign focused on local issues.

“What we don’t need is party pandering,” she wrotel, “rather [we need] strong leadership to tackle our serious problems. And as for my voting record, I will vote for any candidate I feel is qualified to do the job.

“And I hope the citizens of Sandy Springs will reject anyone that tries to divide our community.”

Joe Earle

Joe Earle is Editor-at-Large. He has more than 30-years of experience with daily newspapers, including the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and was Managing Editor of Reporter Newspapers.