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One write-in candidate to tackle Brown in November election

There will be at least one write-in candidate challenging incumbent Byron W. Brown in the race for Buffalo mayor in the November general election.

Taniqua Simmons, a political newcomer and Humboldt Park resident, announced her candidacy back in May but  skipped last month’s Democratic primary that Brown won, virtually sealing a fourth term for him.

Despite that, Simmons says she’s still in the running. She has not been fundraising, but she has been campaigning, she said.

“I’ve been handing out fliers and going to community meetings. We’re getting out and doing grassroots efforts and connecting with people in the neighborhood,” she said.

Simmons has been a community activist for the past 25 years, often using others’ tragedies to push for social change.

Last year, she met with City of Buffalo officials to urge them to replace deteriorating sidewalks in the Humboldt Park neighborhood after a 7-month-old baby was killed by a car on Moselle Street. The mother had taken the stroller into the street because the sidewalk – which has since been replaced – was crumbling and uneven.

And as a community organizer with the advocacy group Power in Numbers, Simmons put together a peaceful protest at Martin Luther King Jr. Park after African-American men were killed by police in Louisiana and Minnesota. Hundreds of community members showed up to the protest, and Simmons was the first person to step up to the megaphone.

Simmons has been endorsed by the Erie County Libertarian Party.

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