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In his second run for mayor of Boston in 1983, state representative Mel King finished second in the preliminary election, but then lost to Ray Flynn in the final. That remains the top performance by a black mayoral candidate in the city.
Though he is supporting Charles Clemons, the African American cofounder of a low-power radio station who launched his campaign more than a year ago, King says what matters is not the color of whoever wins this year’s mayoral election, but that candidate’s agenda.
Here, King, 84, discusses what the city needs from its next mayor and what candidates must do to win.