SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — Janet Burman is easy to spot campaigning around the city. She’s always wearing purple.
“Purple represents bipartisanship,” Burman said Monday.
She acknowledges, if she becomes Syracuse’s first Republican mayor in 20 years, she’ll be working with mostly a Democratic common council.
“Many of the people I’ve worked with, when volunteering, are Democrats,” said Burman. “I’ve got my street cred with them.”
Burman hit the streets Monday to record a series of campaign videos, focusing on her mission to reduce city crime, at locations of the city’s high-profile homicides.
She began at Grant Village Apartments on the city’s Northside, where an 83-year-old retired teacher was stabbed in January.
She said, “Two of the most brutal murders of elderly women took place six blocks either side of my home.”
Burman’s plan is to hire a new police chief who shares her vision of reassigning the police force so specific cops are in the same neighborhoods.
“You start to build a relationship and collaboration between the police and community that way,” she said.
As an economist, Burman says she does a lot of research. She cites the National Bureau of Economic Research with the claim that every additional police officer hired prevents one-tenth of a homicide.
Burman hopes her plan to prevent crime will attract more votes than the Republican who ran for mayor four years ago, who got 2.5% of the election vote. Mayor Ben Walsh won 50%.
Burman said, “Every day, I get strangers contacting me. They saw the debate, want a sign, want to give me a contribution and like what I have to say. That’s heartening. There’s momentum building. Whether that momentum can come to the mass needed on Election Day, I can’t say, but I’m in it to win it.”